About Us

How We Started

Neurodiverse Networks was inspired by the BASES Robotics Program developed by an alumni of Hephaestus 6390, an FRC team at North Surrey Secondary School. BASES is an acronym for Building Academic, Social and Employment Skills and is a program that provides services to students with exceptionalities throughout the Surrey School District. 

The BASES Robotics Program was developed to provide the students with more extra-curricular activities and an opportunity to interact with their peers outside the classroom environment. The program was designed to promote social interaction, but most importantly, equity for the BASES students.

The BASES Robotics Program first commenced in February, 2020 and ran for four weeks, with a workshop per week. Unfortunately due to COVID, the program was put on pause for the 2020/2021 school year. However, we are proud to say that the workshops were able to resume in November, 2021. After the successful implementation of the BASES Robotics Program, Neurodiverse Robotics was founded to expand the initiative into the greater community.

Transition to Neurodiverse Networks

In 2024, Neurodiverse Robotics officially rebranded to Neurodiverse Networks in an effort to better encapsulate the programs offered by the organization. 

Due to the success of the robotics program in 2022 and 2023, the President of Neurodiverse Robotics continued to notice gaps within extra-curricular opportunities for neurodivergent individuals. While program enrolment was high for the robotics workshops, this type of activity only interests a certain demographic. Therefore, at the end of summer 2023, new outlet opportunities started to be developed. 

This led to the birth of the Neurodiverse Dance Program. Dance is known to provide mental stimulation and aid in managing a wide variety in symptoms. Furthermore, dance provides an opportunity for individuals to express themselves through art and movement. Thus, by implementing dance workshops, the Neurodiverse Networks team hopes to provide participants with an outlet which promotes mental stimulation, physical and mental well-being, and creativity. 

Meet the Executives

Our team consists of a diverse group of individuals who are all motivated to provide fun activities for neurodivergent individuals in the community. 

Dyllan Mand


Dyllan is currently a student at the University of Calgary majoring in Biomedical Sciences and minoring in Health and Society. During his high school years at North Surrey Secondary School, Dyllan was involved in various clubs and extra-curricular activities. This included being a member of Hephaestus 6390the robotics team at North Surrey—dance, and band. Through his heavy involvement in the school, Dyllan found a need for more extra-curricular activities for the Building Academic, Social and Employment Skills (BASES) students at his school. To promote equity and improve mental well-being, he developed the BASES Robotics Program. Due to the program's success, Dyllan founded Neurodiverse Robotics to expand the program out into the community whereby a partnership with the Pacific Autism Family Network was developed. Due to his passion for dance and wanting to provide a variety of outlet opportunities for neurodivergent individuals, Dyllan implemented dance workshops leading to the organization changing to Neurodiverse Networks. He hopes to provide participants with an opportunity to express themselves through dance and engage in physical activity.

Sahara Mand

Vice President

Sahara is a fourth year student at the University of Calgary studying Biomedical Sciences. She is also completing her minor in Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies. At the University of Calgary, she is involved in various student-led club initiatives. This includes being the co-president of Unity Arts Society where she promotes inclusivity through art by volunteering with immigrant, refugee and disabled communities. Also an alumni of North Surrey Secondary School, she was heavily engaged in their athletics program as both an athlete and a coach for basketball and volleyball. Sahara has also been a swim instructor, through which she has worked with individuals with ASD. 

Nina Carcamo Arakawa

Director of Public Relations

Nina is a second year student at the University of Calgary studying Health and Society. The remainder of her write-up is pending

Anija Bhatnagar 

Co-Director of Dance Choreography

Anija is a dancer and choreographer who has been dancing since the age of four when her mom enrolled her in a small dance competition. This is when she fell in love with music and movement. Anija grew up learning to dance in a variety of styles, including jazz, contemporary, competitive hip hop, and Indian classical. She eventually discovered her passion in the various competitive styles of Hip-Hop. She began choreographing at the age of 16 for small school dances and workshops at her home studio and then expanded to teaching dance at a professional level. She is now currently a choreographer for her University’s dance teams at UBC. With her diverse upbringing, Anija draws inspiration from a wide range of styles and is passionate about sharing her style and love for dance. Thus, she joined Neurodiverse Networks hoping to inspire the same passion amonst neurodivergent individuals.

Parisha Bhatnagar 

Co-Director of Dance Choreography

At the age of eight, Parisha began her dance journey with PraiseTeam. Since then, she has trained in a variety of dance styles and has competed in multiple teams over the years. Throughout her high school career, she was extensively involved in their athletics program, as an athlete for the basketball, soccer, and badminton. She was also heavily invoved in her high school's dance team. Through her variety of experiences, Parisha has had opportunities to mentor young athletes such as being a coach at her soccer club. Thus, Parisha joined Neurodiverse Networks hoping to apply her diverse skillset while inspiring neurodivergent individuals to share her passion for dance. 

Evan Lim 

Director of Fundraising

Evan is currently studying Computer Engineering at the University of British Columbia. He became involved with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) after joining North Surrey Secondary's robotics team, Hephaestus 6390. With a strong passion for STEM, he wanted to introduce and share these principles to others in the community through robotics. As a result, he mentored many students in various programs such as Team 6390's summer robotics workshops, the BASES robotics program, and Neurodiverse Networks' Robotics program.

Ayesha Ahsan

Director of Internal Affairs

Ayesha is currently a student at Simon Fraser University. The remainder of her write-up is pending

Click below to meet our awesome mentors

Neurodiverse Networks Society

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