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The Power to Rise Above

by Dr Vanessa Atienza-Hipolito, Founding Member, The Brilliant Foundation

BRISBANE, Queensland 10 September 2022 – It is an extra special day that I am soft launching my third anthology book at the Logan Writers Festival in Brisbane today led by editor and Ozark Press publisher Sandy Davies.

I am deeply honoured and humbled to contribute to this collaborative book together with 29 other authors who shared their vulnerable stories of trauma, abuse, bullying, discrimination, harassment and humiliation. This is a collection of powerful stories which I pray will help and serve others to find The Power to Rise Above.

It was day 5 of my 14-day quarantine due to Western Australia's public health close contact mandate last January 2022. I received an email from Sandy of Queensland. She is my co-author in the #1 Amazon best-selling book ‘Courage and Confidence’. We have yet to meet in person but were keeping in touch and preparing for our book launch in March 2022. In her email she was creating an anthology book project, inviting me to collaborate with her.

According to her email:

The concept for the book was born pre-COVID when I was in a toxic workplace where a female manager bullied a young woman in her twenties. In supporting my workmate I discovered here I was in my fifties and had never really shared my story of being bullied and bruised for nearly the entirety of grade 7.

Suddenly my bullied workmate didn’t feel alone or isolated. And she loved that someone like me (vibrant, positive, strong) had had that experience but still became me. At that moment The Power to Rise Above project was born.

The purpose is for young people in similar situations to what each of us has faced hearing from women who in adulthood found a way to rise above their bullies, trauma, discrimination or previous pain to thrive. The intention is for young people to reconnect with their inner strength, have hope, accept themselves, feel empowered and know that they are not alone. And also for adults struggling to work through and release that past trauma to know that they are enough and they will get through.

Each contributor is a woman who is inspirational simply by being.

Contributors are women from across the globe who are living their best lives either as entrepreneurs, artists or public servants. And all are women who experienced bullying, loss, discrimination, anxiety or trauma. Others are from various cities in Australia, Jamaica, The Netherlands, and across America including Hawaii, New Zealand, Guam and Indonesia.

The purpose is to make a difference and instil hope."

After reading her email, I immediately replied and called her on the same day.

After a long conversation, both of us were very excited for each other regarding this book project. “I do not know what is happening right now, Sandy. If you asked me before Christmas or after quarantine isolation, I would have said ‘NO’. However, since I am on day 5 of isolation having nothing else to do, you have given me a reason and purpose during the remaining days of my isolation.”

Sandy’s invitation came at a more opportune time giving me goosebumps all over, a feeling of tingling on my spine and butterflies in my tummy. It was a happy feeling of being aligned and connected to this book project and which I will always remember for the rest of my life.

I am deeply honoured to be included in her book project. This book is a gift to my inner healing. I was able to deeply understand, discover and acknowledge the “triggers” that gave me unnecessary stress and anxiety which I didn’t know existed at that time.

Writing my chapter allowed me to surrender and release all the accumulated negative emotions I unconsciously blocked for many years and decades during my medical training and working as a specialist radiologist. Writing has given me the gift of HEALING.

I realised that while composing my story chapter, the process has brought to light my deep emotional wounds concealed over time. And this truly helped me heal in many areas of my life – emotionally, mentally and spiritually. It also helped me enhance my self-awareness and self-discovery.

I wasn’t happy with the outcome of the first draft because I wrote it with so much rage, anger, hatred and frustration, and it didn’t feel right. After deep reflection, lots of prayers and meditation, I finished the final draft of my chapter with a loving and kind perspective. In the process it was therapeutic…..I was able to forgive myself and my persecutors.

I pray that my chapter will help a lot of medical students, interns, resident medical officers, junior doctors and any doctor in any phase of their career who suffered and is still suffering from mental stress, emotional trauma and moral injury.

You are not alone.

You too have the choice to either be a victim or survivor; a bystander or an upstander.

The Power to Rise Above

The motivational book The Power to Rise Above brings 30 authors together from across the globe to share their stories of hope as a reminder that we are not alone.

There is always room for you to rise, no matter what you are facing. Oprah Winfrey’s favourite guest of all time Dr Tererai Trent has written the foreword to this uplifting book.

Tererai’s beautiful words include The Power to Rise Above sings back to us what our soul already knows: we have the power to rise ... the authors of The Power to Rise Above take all our hurts and help us to heal, to rise as one. These incredible women rekindled their resilience as a reminder to each of us that no one can extinguish our fire, the inner light which burns deep within us. If you are yearning to discover your greatness in this life, this book is for you. If you are going through some rough patches in your life, then this powerful anthology is proof that each of us as women has the power to rise above.

If you are struggling to find your voice, I hope these stories of healing and strength will resonate and empower you to live the best version of yourself.

Sandy had an opportunity to do a news segment on Ticker News about the soft launch of this book at the Logan Writer’s Festival on National and World Suicide Prevention Day.

Here is to link to the interview with Jehzan

The website will be live by the end of September 2022.

For more information, please check Sandy’s website via

The eBook version is available at Smashwords

About Dr Vanessa Atienza-Hipolito

Dr Vanessa Atienza-Hipolito FRANZCR is a Specialist in Breast Imaging and Intervention, author, speaker and entrepreneur. She is the Clinical Director and business owner of Women’s & Breast Imaging, Cottesloe, Western Australia. She is also an Adjunct Clinical Senior Lecturer, Clinical Supervisor, OSCE examiner and Clinician-Student Mentor at Curtin University and The University of Western Australia.

She is a published co-author of 2 other anthology books launched in March 2022 during the International Women’s Week celebration: Courage and Confidence (#1 Amazon best seller in the Women and Business category) and Global Girls (#1 Amazon best seller in Business Biographies and Memoirs).

In June 2019, Dr Vanessa was awarded the Millennial Achiever Award presented by the Filipino Australian Club of Perth, and in 2021 was named Ausmumpreneur of the year, in the Peoples Choice category, and Health and Wellbeing.

​Her commitment to breast care has taken her out of the clinical environment, and into the online space, to create a platform that complements Dr Vanessa's clinical services.

She is the Founding Member of The Brilliant Foundation:

To contact Dr Vanessa for media interviews:

Women's & Breast Imaging (WBI)

Dr Vanessa Atienza-Hipolito

Clinical Director/ Specialist in Breast Imaging and Intervention

Phone: (08) 9383 2799

Instagram: @dr.vanessa.atienza.hipolito

Facebook: Dr Vanessa Atienza-Hipolito

Twitter: @DrVanessaAH

LinkedIn: Dr Vanessa Atienza-Hipolito

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