Laura Hanayli – Occupational Therapist

Laura’s role as an occupational therapist at Menno Place includes helping residents with their mobility skills – using their hands, walking, exercising – and working with them to improve those skills.

Today, we got a chance to ask her some more personal questions – read the interview below!

Q: What training did you receive that helps you in your job at Menno Place?

A: I graduated from UBC in 1991 with a BSc in Occupational Therapy. Since then I have taken extensive courses in stroke rehab and advanced wheelchair seating and mental health rehab. The learning never stops as I take one to two courses per year and catch up on the latest OT journals.

Q: What is something you’re interested in that most people haven’t heard of?

A: I am very interested in archeology and anthropology, I took several courses in college. For years my family thought I was an archeologist instead of an occupational therapist.

Q: What is the best piece of advice you ever received?

A: “Don’t stay comfortable for too long.” This advice has helped me to keep challenging myself and not to stay complacent with the status quo. Being uncomfortable means I am stretching my skills and growing as a person and as a therapist.
Another rule I try to live by is “be fearless.” I tend to be a worrier so this rule helps me push past my hesitations.

Q: Who makes you laugh the hardest? Why?

A: My sister and I get into a lot of adventures and something hilarious always happens.

Q: What is your favourite thing about working at Menno Place?

A: I love the village feel of the campus, saying hello to staff, residents and families in several buildings. The garden areas are wonderfully refreshing, a good place to take a moment to unwind and to problem solve. The chapel is also a place I go to for inspiration in my daily work.

Q: What are some small things that make your day better?

A: Saying good morning to everyone. Smelling the roses in the courtyard. Sharing a laugh with someone.

Q: If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

A: I love where I live, wouldn’t move if you paid me. But I would like to visit places like Machu Pichu, Peru, New Zealand, Prague, Scotland