“I want to meaningfully and creatively honor who I am-a cancer survivor, an artist, a health professional, a designer of my own life.”
My name is Yali and I am founder and CEO of yali's carry on, a philanthropic handbag design company; my colorful designs are storybooks of life as a cancer survivor.
I was treated for childhood leukemia at the age of 5, and then again for recurrent disease at the age of 10, for which I received a life-saving bone marrow transplant from one of my siblings. Through the miracles of modern medicine, an amazing care team and divine providence I am here to tell my story; my voice is expressed through art and design. Creative art therapy served as a vital medium to help me cope with the long and difficult treatments that ultimately saved my life. Sometimes the hardest story to tell is your own and that is where the power of the purse comes in for me. I weave into each of my handbags the lessons from the past and integrate my hopes for the future. My handbags serve as reminders to "carry on" in the face of life's baggage and embody how I choose to lead my life: with vibrant elegance, vast purpose, and a meaningful voice for the cancer experience.
My professional and personal interests are directed toward improving the quality of life of children who have experienced cancer. The people that helped me through the darkest hour are forever written into my story and have inspired me to become the pediatric oncology nurse practitioner I am today.