Trustees & Executive Board
President & CEO
Dharmajyoti (Marcelo A. Vega Gómez )
Dharmajyoti is the founder of Yoga Pura Vida. He has been initiated by Paramahamsa Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati. He has been delving into traditional yoga techniques for more than 20 years, having taken numerous yoga courses in India and following an uninterrupted training process to this day. He maintains the firm belief that yogic values are excellent tools to share with human beings and thus cultivate a better society.
Nuria discovered yoga during her adolescence, delving into its practices and philosophy years later, becoming her lifestyle. From an early age she is interested in the most vulnerable. She is trained as a Laboratory Specialist Technician, Clinic Assistant, Kindergarten Assistant. She has a Postgraduate Degree in Human Development and Creative Activity (Art Therapy) obtained from the University of the Balearic Islands.
Nuria Torralbo Garcia
Ramón Pérez de Lucena
Ramón is a Doctor of Law practicing since 1985. He has offices in Granada, Huesca, Madrid, Málaga and Zaragoza. During his career he has promoted more than 300 foundations, associations and NGOs. His commitment to help society is generated by legal advice to numerous foundations and NGO’s as well he participates as secretary or trustee in several of them.
Atmadiksha (Sandra Lozano)
Atmadiksha has a PhD in Social Sciences. She has a Master’s Degree in Social and Community Gerontology. Area(s) of Study: Social and Behavioral Sciences, Health and Social Protection. She also has a degree in Nursing and a certified yoga teacher from the Satyananda Yoga Academy of Colombia. She currently works as a researcher at the Observatory of Aging Dynamics in Alentejo. She is an Assistant Professor at the Polytechnic Institute of Beja (Portugal). She’s a visiting professor at the Pablo de Olavide University – Seville.
Gyanmurti (Francisco Calatrava)
She discovered yoga at the age of twenty-five and since then it has been present in her life. She regularly travels to India for further education. He has been initiated by Paramahmsa Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati. His aspiration is to help other people experience positive changes in their lives thanks to yoga and thus create a better society.
It is essential that we comprehend the situation in each country with which we interact in order to achieve our goals in an accurate, efficient and sustainable way. Our international team of advisors, which includes local residents and expatriates, is helping us understand cultural mores and specific needs of individual communities, as well as keeping us up to date with all relevant information on the ground.
Tamara Blanco-Briones (Atmapriya)
Degree in Geography and History with a specialty in Art History, and later a degree in Arts.
She was interested in training in different areas until she came into contact with yoga many years ago; she has not stopped training and studying until now. A follower of the Satyananda tradition, she has been to India several times at Munger's ashram, one of which she stayed for 4 months doing the course of yogic studies.
From her stay at the ashram she draws inspiration and the desire to serve others through the teachings of yoga and art, to try to make this world a better place.
Emilia Picca (Uruguay)
Emilia begins her journey on the path of Yoga at the age of 17, maintaining an uninterrupted link with this discipline in a permanent spiritual search. She completed her training as a Yoga Teacher in the Bihar School of Yoga method at the Satyananda Yoga Academy in Bogotá (Colombia). She is a Yoga instructor for children and adolescents, having taken various courses, including the formation of R.Y.E (Recherche sur le Yoga dans l'Éducation) in Uruguay.
She also completed her studies in Psychology at the National University of Córdoba (Argentina). She works as a child psychotherapist and Yoga teacher, maintaining a strong professional link with social and community projects, dedicated to the care of children and adolescents in conditions of extreme vulnerability.
Renée Cameron Pierre (España)
Graduated in Philosophy, Education Science and in Psychology, Postgraduate in Pedagogical Documentation at the Complutense University of Madrid; Applied Arts and Design in Sculpture at the Granada School of Art; Foreign Casual Course Sculpture, Advanced Diploma Sculpture and Foreign Casual Course in Sanskrit at Visva-Bharati University, Shantiniketan, India.
Inspired by the teachings of several Sanathana Dharma masters and especially by the masters of the Satyananda yoga tradition, she has focused her life on helping others using yoga, writing and art as a tool for human growth. As a professional, she develops her work as a documentarian, pedagogue, psychologist, artist and yoga teacher, emphasizing in Yoga - Tantra Philosophy and Indian Art and its symbolism as a methodology for personal development and teaching.
Víctor A. Restrepo Rivera - (Colombia)
Víctor has a deep calling for contemplative practices and their use in community-based projects that foster the well-being of vulnerable populations and people in crisis situations. This is a long-lasting passion that has found nourishment in his work, especially with vulnerable teenagers and children. His vocation has been invigorated by a multidisciplinary approach that finds nourishment from experiences in the fields of education, contemplative practices, positive psychology, and mental health. His career has been one of practice and research. As a researcher for the government, a university, and different foundations-, and in his professional practice, altruism and compassion have been a crucial target. He graduated summa cum laude in history and sociology. Víctor started practicing Chi-Kung Shaolin at an early age during his childhood. He has been dedicated to learning from different spiritual traditions all over the world since then.
Yoga practitioner since 1998. She is a Civil Engineer, tutor and teacher of Yogic Studies 1, 2 and Teachers Training, at the Satyananda Yoga Academy in Colombia. She has been initiated as Karma Sannyas by her master Swami Niranjanananda Saraswati. At the age of 17, she began her journey of personal growth in search of well-being. When she began the Yogic Studies, she found the answer to the question she had always asked herself: “If you want to build a house, you study engineering, if you want to run a business, you study administration but if you want to be a better person, what? " The Yogic Studies of Satyananda Yoga provided her with a systematic and progressive method to grow as a person, to improve health, strengthen the mind, increase energy, develop spirituality and serve others from the heart. Today peace and a great spirit of service reside in her heart.
Stefanie Böttcher- (España)
Born in Germany and mother of 3 children. She worked for 20 years as a manager in a real estate agency and taught German and Spanish languages.
She got to know Yoga through a contemplative workshop given by Dharmajyoti; Since then she has changed her lifestyle, yogic practices are a constant part of her daily life to deepen her yogic path. She is now part of the YPV Foundation, assisting the foundation's projects.
Babardee Fakeh Samura (Sierra Leona)
Babardee is a yoga instructor, whose great interest in learning has led him to participate in various training courses on modern yoga styles. His devotion to sharing knowledge is manifested through continuous trips around Sierra Leone, where people of all ages can participate in his classes for free.
Mugisha Ali Allan (Uganda)
Allan is a yoga instructor and the coordinator of YPVF in Uganda, developing projects for yoga teacher trainings in his country. He established the yogic community of Entebbe, and has a studio where he shares his teachings. Allan also volunteers with numerous NGOs that aid in rehabilitating infants and young people from substance use. His passion and commitment to spread yogic culture and lifestyle inspired him to found the social platform Yoga Uganda (AYIU). Through AYIU, he supports the work of yoga instructors from seven districts in Uganda, raising awareness about the benefits of yoga as a tool for transformation.
Humed Abdul Rahamani (Tanzania)
Humed is a yoga instructor trained by the Foundation. He was the first to translate and record a yoga nidra in Swahili. The fruits of his work can be seen in various NGOs, primary and secondary schools around Arusha.
Donatien Fund Fire (Malaui)
Born in Congo, Donatien resides in the Dzaleka refugee camp in Malawi. Trained as a yoga instructor by the Foundation, he has successfully developed numerous projects in the refugee camp, enhancing the lives of hundreds of children, youth and adults. Committed to improving the quality of life of all the camp’s residents, Donatien works incessantly in very difficult conditions to ensure the sustainability of his endeavors.
Alexis Muganwa Havugimana (Rwanda)
Alexis graduated in conservation biology from the University of Rwanda. He is a musician, organic farmer, a Yoga, Qi gong and Tai chi instructor. He got to know yoga in 2013 and after one year he started teaching his fellow students in the university. He is the project coordinator of YPVF in Rwanda. His interest is to spread yoga knowledge through his community where he cooperate with different organizations, teaching yoga to all ages people, including genocide survivors, children with disabilities or care givers in hospitals. He believes yoga is the right tool for the transformation of his society.
Pius Muli Kaluu (Kenya)
Pius is the Foundation yoga teacher training projects development in Kenya. His great interest in promoting the physical, mental and emotional well-being of the less privileged children of his city has led him to develop projects for the dissemination and teaching of yoga in some of the most underprivileged communities in Nairobi so that the little ones can enjoy the benefits of these practices.
Carolina de la Cruz (Tanzania)
Carolina is a freelance graphic designer, living in Zanzibar, Tanzania. She is excited to contribute to YPVF projects while also respecting the cultural diversity in Africa, knowing that yoga and meditation are disciplines that help expand consciousness and improve quality of life.