Hello! My name is Monique and I’m a new volunteer with Merakos Fieldhouse. This is my first week at the house and it’s the perfect opportunity to introduce myself to you. I wear a few different hats and the common theme is their relationship with community building and engagement. I spent 23 years working with a support agency for women living with HIV as a peer advocate and have decades of varied volunteer experiences from audiobook narrator to art therapist to hospice chaplain to maker of animal shelter blankets and now fieldhouse guardian. Currently, I am a counselling therapist with ProChoices Clinic and the creatrix of Fully Woven: Crafted Connections.
According to a Myers-Briggs quiz, my personality type is ISFJ (defender) and I would agree. I’ve got your back. Finding ways to interrupt isolation and disconnection is my greatest adventure. I’ve experienced the depths of depression and know that connection and being part of a meaningful community is the best antidote. Perhaps you’ve felt the pangs of loneliness yourself? Thankfully, we have places like Merakos providing spaces to gather and connect. I’m curious about how you like to connect. What engages you? I like to gather around a pot of hot tea with piles of magazines, glue sticks, scissors, and colourful paper for a chit-chat and collage extravaganza.
I’ve got a few ideas for community events as we head deeper into autumn and winter. Maybe some guided meditations, knitting circle, journal writing, book club, community 'stone' soup, or mandala drawing? I’ve got plenty of ideas but it’s your ideas that I would rather know! It’s that time of year when we intuitively turn towards more cosy activities and the vision of us gathered around the tables here at the fieldhouse is most heartwarming.
I’m very excited to be part of the Merakos family and I’m looking forward to spending the next few months at the Riley Park fieldhouse. As I sit here in front of the window - with the golden autumn sun streaming in - I have the pleasure of witnessing a gaggle of cheerful children, waggily tailed dogs, and swaying tree branches. I can’t think of a better place to be than right here. You’re invited to witness the goodness that is Marakos too.
You can find out more about Monique at fullywoven.com or pop by the fieldhouse in person Tuesdays & Thursdays from 11am-3pm.