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Alice Sophia Dow (Paloma)
DOB: Dec. 9, 1951
Place of birth: Manhattan, NY
She was born into a family of educators and politicians from New England, and raised in New York State, close to Manhattan. Her father, John G. Dow, was a Liberal Democratic Congressman from New York who defended civil rights and took a strong anti-war stand during the 60’s. She studied music intensely as a child and adolescent. After graduating from High School, she traveled to Europe where she spent 3 years delving into the European and North African cultures.
On her first visit to North Africa, she became aware of the dire poverty that reigns in the third world. The impact of this realization cultivated a strong sense of social justice that became a part of her calling to make a difference. She studied Art and Music in New York, France and Italy.
The death of a family member combined with the philosophical tone of the 60’s, lead her to search for a mission and a belief system, something that would bring closure to her grief and her many unanswered existential questions.
At the age of 22, she joined the “Family International”, a New Religious Movement based on the Bible and the teachings of David Berg. Here, she found the belief system she had been searching for and adopted a life of service that gave meaning to her existence.
After 10 years, she married Mario R. Torres (Agustin), an Argentinean musician and member of the group and had two children, a son and a daughter.
In 1993, the Family became the target of an international hate campaign and she and her husband were falsely accused and taken to trial in Argentina along with other members of the group. After three months of imprisonment, they were acquitted.. She and her family left Argentina and settled in Colombia.
After this traumatic incident, Alice Sophia and Agustin felt lead to help others who are suffering emotional and psychological trauma. They founded the Healing Colombia Foundation www.healingcolombia.org and throughout the last 12 years, have distributed $1,500,000 worth of humanitarian aid to the displaced people on the northern Pacific coast.
They developed a series of workshops that have proven to be extremely effective for the inner healing of people affected by trauma and violence, using music therapy as a core element. Approximately 1200 youth have benefited from their method.
Alice Sophia is also an experienced ESL teacher and throughout her career, she has taught government officials, carried out sessions of consecutive and simultaneous interpreting, both in Colombia and New York and translated several books from Spanish to English.
She has directed programs for youth, taught music and harmony, organized events, both in Colombia as well as New York and provided counseling for youth and adults/ victims of violence and neglect. Her experience in the field of spiritual counseling bridges all ages and social classes.
Her daughter married a young Afro-Colombian basketball champion and currently she has four beautiful daughters. Her son has chosen the life of a missionary after years of exploring other possibilities.
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