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Bride Of The Week: Nychol Lyna

Bride Of The Week: Nychol Lyna
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Our #GLBride of the Week is the gorgeous Nychol Lyna, who married the love of her life in our G-211 gown. She and her fiancé tied the knot at the Atlantis Bahamas Resort with a beautiful destination wedding. Today, we'll be introducing you to her amazing non-profit, Dream North Foundation, and the details of her stunning wedding in the following interview. As told by Nychol:

We are proud to announce a special voice in the community, Nychol Lyna, founder of Dream North Foundation (2021), and author of “Forgotten Baby” (Newman Springs Publishing) children’s book series. As a Los Angeles-based entrepreneur, Nychol possesses an extensive background in the educational system, non-profit and community development, working for organizations, such as HeadStart, LAUSD, LACOE, and Little Voices and FAMLI Inc. (Green Dot Public Schools). She has been recognized by Congresswoman Karen Bass, Vice President Kamala Harris, Mayor Eric Garcetti, Supervisor Holly J Mitchell and Senator Dianne Feinstein. As the Founder of Dream North LLC (2014), Nychol Lyna is in the business of project strategy consulting and is dedicated to helping others bring their vision to life while encouraging women, youth, and community empowerment. 

Dream North Foundation is a California charity whose mission is to promote the advancement of underprivileged women and children who are survivors of abuse, sex trafficking, judicial challenges, and foster care systems. The organization also supplies programs for at-risk women and children including rehab assistance, group homes, and societal preparation and placement. This collaboration between the designated sites and DNF is intended to bridge cultural gaps between local governmental agencies and the at-risk communities they serve.

Dream North Foundation (DNF) produces celebratory book reading events for underrepresented foster children nationally and overseas, and in partnership with The Bahamas, hosted its signature Story Time with Dream North & Friends to its largest audience since its inception on Thursday, August 11, 2022 at the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort in Nassau, Bahamas for approximately 200 children inhabiting eight children’s homes on the island and Women United. Dream North Foundation is proud to announce an ongoing partnership with The Bahamas with plans to uplift eight children’s homes, five women’s shelters, the National Bahamas Libraries (consisting of 50 sites), and Women United.

In addition Dream North Foundation will also announce an unforgettable contest for women transitioning from “rough times to love times,” which includes a dream wedding at the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort for up to 25 special guests in Summer 2023, along with its donation of a couture wedding gown valued at up to $2,000.00 for the lucky bride customized by luxury designer Galia Lahav of Tel Aviv, Israel. Additional contest rules will be announced at the Bahamas Bridal Association’s Trade and Bridal Show on Sunday, September 4, 2022.

Nychol says, “Both my co-author and stepdaughter have been a part of the foster care system, which inspired me to start this foundation. As a family, we want to show foster youth that they are not alone, and they are loved,” she said. “The purpose of the Story Time events is to give 1,000+ youth each year experiences to look forward to, offer scholarship opportunities designed to help their future, and produce events that celebrate all that they are. With our recent accomplishments of being featured on Fox 11 News with Christine Devine and securing placement of our book in the A C Bilbrew Library of the Los Angeles County Library, we believe the future is full of hope and we want all the children and women we touch to hold on to that hope, because life is beautiful!”

To learn more about DNF and how you can contribute to their upcoming community events, please visit the following link: https://dreamnorthfoundation.org/donate/

Her Wedding Story...

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One thing you wish you knew as a new bride? What advice would you give to future brides?

I wish I had known how difficult wedding planning would be. It went from me planning a wedding for all my guests, and being quite frustrated through the majority of the process, to cancelling my wedding altogether and vying to host a community day for the children’s homes of the Bahamas. Yes, all event planning can be difficult. But to feel frustrated while planning a day that is meant to be one of the most important of your life just didn’t seem right for me. 

To all the future brides, I wish for you peace and love. What matters most is the bond between you and your partner. Don’t let anyone or thing come in between the love you feel for one another during such a special time. And most importantly, spend within your means. This one day may last a lifetime through memories and photographs, but your investments in your future are much more viable, memorable and everlasting.

A detail that made your event special/unique?

Being able to make the focus about the children and women was the most special thing of all. There’s eight children’s homes in the Bahamas serving approximately 172 children. We were so honored to be able to host a portion of the children onsite for a special celebration and the sharing of our love.

The children were so excited to enjoy the activities we had in store for them, most specifically our in-demand “Potted Lily Sustainable Arts Station” which promotes gardening as a tool for improving mental health. The light in their eyes and radiance of their smiles is something I’ll never forget. I’m truly grateful to the community of Nassau and the Bahamas Ministry of Child Services and Minister Obie Wilchcombe for granting us such an opportunity to share with their children’s homes, allowing my family to share our pre-nuptials love and blessings with their children.

How did you know your dress was 'the one'?

My fiancé proposed to me in 2018. Galia Lahav caught my eye that same year. And the G-211 was always it for me. Unconventional. Elegant. Unique. It was me! A 3-piece couture gown, consisting of pants, a sheer lace corset, and a long dramatic train. This dress was at the time and 4 years later is still my dream gown! I couldn’t be more satisfied by how perfectly it paired with our destination location and ceremony space. And I intend to wear it again when we have another intimate ceremony back home with all our family and friends at our home in California! 

How did it feel when you put on your dress the day of your event? What was everyone's reaction to the dress?

The day I put on my dress was extremely emotional. I have never dreamt of getting married. I had never imagined I’d be wearing such a magical dream wedding gown. Until a year ago, the Bahamas or a destination wedding wasn’t even a thought. But the moment I put on my dress and looked at myself, I simply felt so humble and grateful for the opportunity to share in such a special moment with a man who I know will never leave my side no matter the ups or downs.

Though this day is all about that community of Nassau, Bahamas, I cannot wait for the moment when I’ll get to make my future husband and loved ones the focus and walk down the aisle in this beautiful, breathtaking gown. For now, it has been a joy being able to share this custom work of art with our “Story Time with Dream North & Friends” guests at Atlantis, consisting of 50 children, 30 Bahamian dignitaries (including Bahamas First Lady Mrs. Ann Marie Davis), children’s home administrators/directors, and local vendors, and 20 of my close friends and family who traveled from the USA to support me and Dream North Foundation. 

Getting to the Bahamas was not an easy journey for me, my team or my family, and often I wanted to throw in the towel. But the photos that we will get to hold dear for a lifetime, I regret not one moment of this journey. And I want to say thank you again to Galia Lahav for making this time in our lives even more special.

Would you have done anything differently?

I wouldn’t have tried to plan a nonprofit youth event AND a wedding at the same time. What was I thinking!? I’m an extremely ambitious person and often believe I’m making decisions that make sense. But boy oh boy… did I sure underestimate the stressors that come from planning events. If I would’ve simply focused on my nonprofit, I could’ve made my life and finances suffer so much less. But lessons are learned and we grow from them.

And after many talks with loved ones, I believe my/our final process and outcomes were amazing. And I have to extend a special thank you to my mother Keesha Cleveland (former Director of HeadStart of the Los Angeles County Office of Education), my event director Paulette Davis (Amour Affairs), and our dream wedding partner Bahamas Bridal Association and its President, Cindy Knowles. Without their support and direction, I wouldn’t have gotten through the year of planning that it took to make “Story Time with Dream North & Friends” happen. 

What was your favourite part of the event to plan/you were most looking forward to?

My favorite part was choosing a menu that my guests would enjoy. We had a 5-course plated lunch for our featured event for approximately 50 USA and Bahamian guests. The children were delighted to enjoy chicken fingers and fries and a delectable chocolate dessert. Followed by toasting with the island’s coveted drink, Bahama Mama Rum Punch, and a vanilla cake highlighting our “Story Time with Dream North & Friends” theme and vibrant colors, saved special for our “StoryTime with Dream North & Friends” USA staff/volunteers to celebrate a job well done! 

My family and I are genuine food connoisseurs and it was the most exciting part of the process for us! All of our guests enjoyed every taste and we couldn’t be more grateful for the chefs at Atlantis and their culinary craft and expertise!

How did you meet your fiancé? How did he propose?

I met my fiancé in 2016. A friend of mine pointed out that one gentleman in particular was consistently showing me love on my Instagram page. I didn’t know who they were referring to so I took a closer look. What I immediately saw was “Juggalot Records”. At the time I was working on an independent film featuring the late Auntie Fee and I needed original music for my film. I emailed immediately about my project and requested his contribution. He was immediately supportive, and we have been in touch ever since. 

It was in 2018, while on a Carnival Cruise from Long Beach, CA to Ensenada, Mexico. During one of our stops to Catalina Island, my fiancé insisted we parasail. I was totally against this by the way. Being up in the cold air was not ideal during my vacation. Once we made it to the top, I began to gaze at our beautiful view. I looked back towards Kennie and he was holding a diamond ring. My response was “You’re crazy” and I held out my finger. As we slowly reeled back into the boat, it would seem that all of our co-passengers, who were complete strangers we had only just met during this excursion, were all aware of my fiancé’s plans, even helping to record us on his phone from our departure and imminent return.

My fiancé has always been creative and outside of the box, and really wanted to make this moment special.

How was your experience with the GL team?

Thank you so much to Desiree and all those at Galia Lahav who made this all possible, as well as the press team. You made me feel comfortable and supported every step of the way. A special shout out to Desiree for getting perfect measurements of my gown! 

Not only did you communicate effectively and ensure my dress was ready in time, in spite of some personal schedule interferences, but you worked diligently with me to highlight me as a “Bride of the Week”, while also committing to supporting my nonprofit organization’s “A Dream Wedding in the Bahamas” Contest, where a lucky bride would too be featured as a “Bride of the Week” in Summer 2023! 

We are proud to officially announce this contest on September 4, 2022 at the Bahamas Bridal Association’s Trade & Bridal Show in Nassau, where a formerly victimized woman who has transitioned from “Rough Times to Love Times” will get to have her dream day with her dream man. As a woman who has personally experienced the traumas of Domestic Violence, this initiative is close to my heart and on behalf of Dream North Foundation and the Bahamas Bridal Association, we want to say THANK YOU to Galia Lahav for using your platform to highlight stories that matter and can impact lives on a global scale! 

I’ll never forget your kindness and love and allowing us to really enjoy this experience. 

How many dresses did you try on before you found it?

I knew my dress was the G-211. It chose me four years ago. There were no others in my eyes…

@dreamnorthllc Nychol Lyna (Founder & Creator of “A Dream Wedding”)
@dreamnorthfoundation Dream North Foundation
@bahamasbridalassociation Bahamas Bridal Association (“A Dream Wedding” Partner)
Venue | Atlantis Bahamas Resort (Coral “Adonis” for Venue/Caterer; Cove & Royal for Bridal Visuals)
Event Director | Amour Affairs by Paulette Davis 
Bridal Accessories | Swarovski 
Decorations/Floral Arrangements | Bahama Fantasies by Victorine 
Photography | Bahamas Visual Services by Craig Lenihan & Tim Aylen: Julian Wallace Leo Daniel 
Videography | Emmanuel Petit-Homme 
MUA | Philipa J Newbold 
Disc Jockey | Stormy Monroe Disc Jockey
Photo Booth Rental | Pic Click 
Audio/Visual | Big Dunn Entertainment
Live Band Entertainment | Jazz Cats 

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Kaileah Christine | August 29, 2022

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