Resilience is the key to a healthy life. Hosts Asya Gonzalez and Zahra Hasanian talk with Health App reporter, Alex Pawlakos who provides studies and tips on how to be more resilient. From a health standpoint, the better you handle the pressures and stresses of life, the better off you will be physically, mentally, and emotionally. To be resilient means to bounce back quickly. Our hosts interview Mary O’Connor, an actor who lost her ability to walk after a devastating injury in 2014. With her optimistic and determined struggle to regain her ability to walk, she is on a mission to encourage the entertainment industry to cast disabled actors in projects. Mary recently studied with James Franco and was part of an independent film she and her classmates created with Mr. Franco. Asya and Zahra read a humorous story from Cynthia Brian’s book, Be the Star You Are!® for TEENS that illustrates the importance of recovering from mishaps and turning negatives into positives to move forward.
Bio: Mary O’Connor
After graduating from high school, Mary O’Connor moved from Massachusetts to Santa Barbara, California. She answered an ad for an open movie audition and snagged her first acting job in the feature film “The Bet.”. She then moved to Los Angeles to pursue her career in films. In 2014, she suffered a rare spinal cord stroke while surfing resulting in being paralyzed from the waist down. She has not let this derail her from her dream of being a working actress and continues to make incredible progress in her recovery.
She talks about her story to inspire others and to bring awareness to the disappointing lack of representation of disabled individuals in the film and television industries.
Mary now walks with a cane and is studying acting with James Franco at his Studio 4 School in Los Angeles.
Listen at Voice America Kids: http://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/92015/the-gift-of-resilience
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