HFAR Learning Experts

Meet the experts who lead our HFAR Learning Program sessions, teaching you various ways to help eliminate the financial impact when living with or caring for someone with a disability.

Sophia Melone

Facilitator | Tax Advantages when living with a disability

Sophia ( Meh•lo•nie) Melonē, the Debt Demolisher®, is a Financial Literacy Advocate/Financial Prosperity Coach who facilitates workshops, seminars, keynote speaking, and coaching to deliver the blueprint to a healthy money relationship. She is extremely dedicated to the success of families, communities, entrepreneurs, and
mission-oriented businesses across the world. Her movement to make "Debt Freedom the New Norm and Wealth Building the Natural Nature of Habit" has pushed Sophia into her purpose of sharing the endless possibilities of financial transformation.

After single-handedly paying off over $83K of debt in 21 months while being a caregiver, Sophia launched her financial education company, SMASH Debt®, to help families strategize on how to get out of debt, start building wealth, and become leaders in their financial house. She has many success stories with her clients who have overcome severe anxiety around their finances, paid off 5-figure debts in record time, drastically improved their credit score from 619 to 800, and started building a financial cushion they never thought could be possible.

Sophia has spoken on stages at wealth empowerment conferences with heavy influencers such as Lisa Nichols, Dr. George Fraser, Constance Carter, Sally-Ann Roberts, Olympian Danielle Scott-Arruda, and more. She is a Certified Financial Education Instructor (CFEI), member of the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education (AFCPE), and a member of the Personal Finance Speakers Association. She also holds a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting, an MBA in Financial Management, and has over 14 years of experience in the accounting field. To date, Sophia has DEMOLISHED over $260K of debt in less than five years while being a caregiver and managing two households.

Sophia Melonē is a natural giver at heart and loves to SERVE and TEACH. But what brings her the most joy is seeing the mindset shift occur in her students as she educates them to leap toward their financial prosperity. She is a FINANCIAL POWERHOUSE who is excited and passionate about teaching all classes of human kind to spend more fiscally responsibly, begin building wealth in the most effective manner possible, and become financially free for the sustainability of their legacy. Sophia Melonē has the blueprint to a healthy financial relationship and serves families with the strategy and accountability they need to leave the financial footprint they desire and that their legacy deserves.

Shanike Wallace

Facilitator | Life Insurance & Estate Planning when living with a disability

Shanike Wallace received her Bachelor degrees in the fields of Communications and Marketing from the University of Phoenix. She is the Co-Founder of “The Ark Financial Services” a company that provides a wide range of financial services to their clients. Shanike, is a strong advocate for Life Insurance especially for minorities in low-income communities. In 2020 she was honored for her contributions to the Ratcliffe Elementary School in Richmond, Virginia. With her passion for education, she serves as a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars and uses her professional association to educate others on the importance of financial literacy. She involves herself in community out-reach activities that promote and educate families on proper burial and estate planning. Her professional interest include teaching and empowering women to take a more active role in their family’s financial success. Through her communicative approach to language and teachings on life insurance she continues to educate others in the area of financial literacy.
Zonovia Proctor, NCC who led our Caregiver Mental Health session in our HFAR Learning Program

Zonovia Proctor

Facilitator | Caregiver Mental Health

My name is Zonovia K.T. Roberts-Proctor and I am excited to be with on this journey of self-discovery, learning, reflection and growth!

THE FORMAL: I am a Nationally Certified Counselor (NCC) and a PhD student in the Counselor Education Department at the University of Central Florida. I earned a Master's degree in Marriage, Couples and Family Therapy and a certificate in Clinical Mental Health from Stetson University. I also earned a Masters in Transformative Leadership and a Bachelor's degree in Music from Bethune-Cookman University. I have over 12 years of Higher Education experience both as faculty and administration and am passionate about helping students in transition.

Prior to staring Road to Thrive, my clinical practice has been primarily in not-for-profit community agencies that provide counseling services for low socioeconomic families in the Central Florida area, many of whom are of African American or Hispanic origin, first-generation Americans or current immigrant families. I have also worked with undergraduate students at the Stetson counseling center and focused on first generation college students, first generation American students, minority students and international students. I was a 2019-2020 fellow of the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) Minority Fellowship Program (MFP) where I focused on learning how to partner with my country of origin, and other underserved countries to begin to prepare others to meet the mental health needs of their communities. Currently, I serve as the graduate student representative for the Florida Counseling Association (FCA), connecting graduate students state wide to pressing issues, professional development opportunities and resources.

THE FACTS: All clients are welcome! If we find that I am not a good fit, or the best person to handle your needs, I am happy to assist you in finding where you need to be. My practice and research interests include mental health needs for women and underserved people groups. I am especially able to help clients, who are in any kind of major transition. I love helping you find ways to cope and feel stable even when the things around you aren't. I use person-centered and solution-focused practices that empower clients to move from 'survive to thrive', whatever that means to them. I am a Registered Intern with the State of Florida and you can read more about my license number and supervisor information below.

THE FUN: I am originally from Freeport, Grand-Bahama and I came to the US for college as an undergraduate. My favorite foods all have something to do with conch, curry and coconut. I have many passions and my education reflects that. I enjoy reading, writing, singing and spending time with my family. I love a good discussion and I can be pretty competitive when it comes to games. Also, I LOVE BEING A THERAPIST. I fully believe in the therapeutic process and I love to hold hope for my clients until they can hope for themselves. I want you to bring all of who you are to each session and it shows. Though my time with you may not be forever, my aim is for its impact to last a lifetime.

Again, I'm happy you're here. I look forward to taking this journey with you!

In community,



Registered Intern #: IMH20072

Clinical Supervisor: Morgan Perun

Supervisor License #: MH13830

Additional Certifications

Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Certificate: Gottman Institute / Gottman (1): Couple's Counseling

Certificate: Prepare/Enrich Certified Facilitator (Pre-Marital/Marital Counseling) / 1323728

Michael Dalto

Facilitator | Everything about SSI & SSDI

Michael Dalto is a big, old benefits geek. He has delivered presentations on benefits and work incentives to thousands of people with disabilities, family members and professionals since 1989. He created state certification for Maryland benefits counselors and provided training and technical assistance for the certification. He oversaw benefits counseling for the PROMISE project, a research grant that served youths who receive SSI and their families. He also consulted with the Institute for Community Inclusion of the University of Massachusetts Boston on the SGA Project, a research effort that tested interventions to support vocational rehabilitation consumers in Kentucky and Minnesota to work their way off Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. He has written training materials about benefits and provided technical assistance to Virginia Commonwealth University's National Training and Data Center. He now consults with Griffin Hammis Associates and the National Association of Blind Merchants.
CLICK HERE to get the secrets to approvals as a caregiver or person with a disability
Are you an expert and interested in sharing your expertise with our audience? Please contact our Executive Director, Melanie Oates, melanie@hereforareason.org

Information presented herein is subject to change at the discretion of the organization. In no way does Here For A Reason, Inc. represent or replace licensed medical care.