Back at the end of September, we were excited to take on a new member of the HQ team – Admin Assistant, Farah Najib. It’s been a pleasure bringing Farah into the fold and introducing her to the Coney way. Here, she’ll tell you a bit more about the experience so far, in her own words…
Hello! I’m Farah, Coney’s new Admin Assistant. I joined the team at the end of September, and in less than two months have already learned so much about the inner workings of an arts charity. It was via the Twittersphere that I heard about the role, when Eve Leigh, a writer who I admire and one of Coney’s associate artists, shared the job vacancy and expressed how brilliant an organisation Coney is. Admittedly, I hadn’t encountered Coney’s work before, but my interest was piqued. I embarked on a mission to gather Coney intel, before sending off an enthusiastic application.
What struck me immediately during my research was Coney’s statement that ‘the world can be a magical place where ordinary people do extraordinary things’ – because that’s a notion with which I agree wholeheartedly. I was intrigued by their playful practice of games and adventures; as somebody who’s spent time working with young people, I’m always looking for sneaky chances to get lost in play. Prior to my interview, I explored The Pop Up Playhouse, taking particular joy from the intimate and meditative atmosphere of The Serendipity Pile, which invited me to get lost in books and share words with unseen strangers. It was so simple, and yet unlike anything I’d experienced before.
Of course, I was chuffed to be offered a role within this exciting organisation committed to sparking change through play. On starting, it quickly became apparent that learning the language of Coney would be a gradual process. With such a broad, far-reaching portfolio of work including (but definitely not limited to) community pub quizzes, gameplay on Zoom, street-based smartphone adventures, and workshops for young people encouraging playful activism – there’s been lots to get to grips with. Coney’s ‘small but mighty’ team has supported this learning journey wholeheartedly though, which has made my newbie status feel less daunting and more like an adventure.
Alongside my work at Coney, I’m also a writer. Fitting in time for creativity alongside ‘day jobs’ has always been a struggle, but refreshingly Coney is a flexible organisation that values, and is interested in, all facets of their team members both within and outside of their allocated job role. It’s wonderful to be working within a job where my writing life isn’t a conflicting interest, but rather can complement and support my creative and professional development.
I’ve now had the chance to get stuck into a few Coney experiences, and it’s been a total delight to witness how this playfulness unfolds in practice. I’m really excited to be a part of Coney’s next steps – I sense big things on the horizon!
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