ABOUT

Who I am

 

I am a speaker, an advocator for road safety and burn trauma and an artist. I was born in UK in 1978. I moved to my native Thessaloniki, Greece and since 2016 I have been travelling between Greece and Canada, where I happily live with my new husband, professional speaker, workplace safety expert, Dan Plexman. www.danplexman.com

 

My story

 

I started my entrepreneurial journey at the age of 19 running my own patisserie business that soon after blossomed in another patisserie shop, promising me a prosperous and secure future ahead. 

In 2001, I watched my life change in one split second. I was involved in a horrific car accident where I lost two close friends, I came out with severe injuries and very close to losing my life. My body suffered 74% of 3rd and 4th degree burns. After a few long months in the ICU and countless surgeries, I finally beat the odds and my life was no longer in danger. My mental health though was challenged when reality hit me hard.  
The news of my friends passing, devastated me. 

Fragments of my old self while looking in the mirror shattered me. 
My rehabilitation was long and difficult, requiring more surgeries, long hours of physiotherapy and a lot of determination to not give up. 

Life followed with a difficult divorce, and another health challenge. Cancer.
As a result, I lost my business and my identity. My life changed in one split second.

In 2017 I decided to reinvent myself and start living a more purpose-driven life. This is when the real journey began! Since then I have been spreading my message on road safety and I consider myself a thriver and a survivor instead of a victim.
I have been delivering presentations to raise awareness on road safety. I also help burn survivors to find the confidence and courage to reinvent themselves.

I live by my motto “it only takes one split second for reality to change” and I challenge you to make every second of your life, meaningful.

From dealing with the possibility of hand amputations, today I am an artist, creating works of art, counting numerous exhibitions in Greece, Europe and Canada.

See more at www.nasiahouvarda.com

My mission

I have been collaborating with several institutions to encourage and motivate young generations to make the right choices when it comes to their safety on the road.

Through my presentation I am sharing how my life was before, during and after the crash. Why my accident happened and how it impacted everyone around me. All the challenges that I had to face, from being a healthy young girl to fighting for my life, facing feelings of guilt, depression, defeat, and also some small victories along the long road to my recovery. 

I am host of the podcast called “Crash Victim Life Survivor” where my guests and I, take the listeners through our own experience of surviving a car crash. 

Words are powerful and they can make a difference.

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Athanasia Houvarda
Advocator for Road Safety
Speaker, Artist