Tuesday, September 3, 2013

In the waters with ... Coura Niang

September is back to school month so we thought we would celebrate by talking to body blitz member and Child and Youth worker Coura Niang, who teaches children with Autism how to communicate and build relationships ...

What is your career?  What do you love most about it?
I am a Child and Youth Worker by day, and a Behaviour Consultant by night. I work primarily with children who have Autism, teaching them how to communicate, self-regulate and build sustainable social relationships. I feel so lucky to do what I do, to have the privilege to work with such an extraordinary population that is constanty teching us neuro-typical beings how we can be more flexible in our communication, deeper in our expressions of compassion and empathy, and motivated in the way we all relate to each other. My job requires a lot of patience, and my absolute favorite part is getting to really just BE with the kids and clients I work with.

What teacher influenced you the most?
My grade two teacher, Ms. Wilton, taught me with compassion, love and understanding. She was the first teacher to play with me, listen to me and encourage my voice. 

Your favourite class or subject?
Music, I loved music theory and playing in the orchestra. At one point in time I played three instruments: the violin, the cello and piano and sang in my extra curricular activity!

Your worst class or subject?
Math.  Ugh. Math.  I was determined to complete math in high school, but just didn’t have the knack for it. Though to my surprise I found statistics in university quite interesting.

Favourite teaching moment.
My job as a Child and Youth worker requires me to support students in building friendships. One of my favorite teaching moments or rather activities is creating peer groups for students with exceptionalities. Teaching kids how to survive weird and awkward social interactions, and really provide a space for students, for whom would otherwise have some difficulty developing friendships, to jump into the deep end and take some social risks.

How do you stay balanced with life, career, family, friends & health?
Being healthy is of the utmost importance to me. I really get that if we don’t take care of ourselves, our intentions to contribute to others end up costing us. I stay balanced by having body blitz in my life.  Body blitz really has afforded me the opportunity and rhythm to take out some time to clear my own head and get present to the commitments in my life. 

How do you un-wind after a long day?
After a long day at work, I love to head straight to body blitz, soak in the waters until my mind is still. Then I head home for a light dinner and a relatively early sleep. Body blitz has really helped me prioritize time for myself, time for processing and time for inner peace.

How often do you visit the waters?
I frequent the waters many times a week, being a member is one of the best investments I’ve ever made. I love being able to be between the locations, get to know the staff and have a physical place in my life that is designated for relaxation.

No comments:

Post a Comment