Read on to learn about our fabulous team of instructors who are passionate about sharing their knowledge, skills, and talents with our community!
Do you have an idea for a new program? Want to share your skills and talents as an instructor? Have you taken a class and what to share your feedback? Or for anything else related to recreation, contact our program coordinator, Stefie at firstname.lastname@example.org or 250-370-9101 ext. 2
Complete a Program Proposal Form a with your idea or get in touch.
My name is Negar and I'm a student of Business Administration at Royal Roads University. I like reading (obviously), social justice and long, deep conversations about social justice. I've been with Oaklands Community since last fall, sharing comments and insights about the bookclub's monthly reads. I look forward to connecting with enthusiastic readers!
Negar facilitates our community book club. The group meets online on the first Wednesday of each month from 6:30-8 pm. Check our website or follow us on Facebook for monthly book selection.
Erin Ewing is a certified yoga therapist with a background in social work. She fell in love with yoga in 2012, completed her initial 200-hour yoga teacher training in Thailand in 2016, and then spent a year in India and Nepal studying in ashrams. Wishing to deepen her focus on yoga as a therapeutic modality, she moved to Victoria in 2017 where she both completed the 800-hour Yoga Therapy diploma at Ajna Yoga, and adopted the West Coast as home.
Erin's inspiration for teaching yoga is to make the practice accessible, welcoming, and inclusive for people who face barriers to practice, and to tailor its therapeutic benefits for each unique individual. Erin is known for her gentle, calm, and down-to-earth demeanour. She creates a safe, nurturing space to soothe the nervous systems of yoga participants, and supports each person in practicing in their own way. She specializes in yoga for trauma and mental health, as well as working frequently with older adults and folks with various injuries and health conditions.
Erin teaches Bedtime Yoga on Monday evenings from 7:45 - 9:00pm at Oaklands Community Centre.
Sarah Bolen is a registered yoga teacher with a passion for healthy living. After completing her 200-hour yoga teacher training in 2011 she taught in Ottawa before moving to the West Coast in 2013.
Sarah worked in camp environments throughout her youth and early adult years and has always been passionate about working with children. In 2014 Sarah traveled to Kripalu to complete the Radiant Child Yoga Teacher Training Program. She has enjoyed teaching children’s and youth yoga every since!
Sarah welcomed her first daughter in 2017 and enjoys practicing yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises with her little one! When not teaching yoga, Sarah works in digital media! You can also find her online yoga classes on YouTube!
Sarah offers Family Yoga on Sundays from 10-10:45 am at Oaklands Community Centre.
Nicole started her career in the healing arts and this year marks the twentieth year that she is practising Foot and Hand Reflexology and running her small business, Ocean Holistics ~*~ Mind Body Spirt Healing in Fernwood.
Nicole loves and enjoys many forms of therapeutic arts and completed her Yoga Teacher Training at the Salt Spring Centre of Yoga in 2005 and has been teaching Yoga, Pilates and various courses for twelve years. Nicole brings a fresh and fun (and funny) take on all modalities and she loves teaching Yoga-style classes at the community centre closest to her home and business. If you enjoy taking classes that are sweet and lovely then she is the teacher for you. Nicole also brings her thearaputic teachings as a Reiki master with workshops offering knowledge on the Chakra System, Reflexology, Reiki healing, crystals and spiritual readings. One Love to All, Nicole D'Agati.
Nicole offers Rejuvenation Yogalates on Thursdays from 7:15-8:30 pm and various alternative health workshops at Oaklands Community Centre.
Hi! My name is Regina Elizondo. I have been in Canada for the majority of my life, but I am originally from Mexico. When I first moved here I struggled to learn the language and found myself falling in love with the visual arts as my way of communicating. Now that I can speak English, I have transformed my passion for art into a career. In 2019, I graduated from the University of Victoria with a Bachelors degree in Art Education. I now teach high school art in a variety of Greater Victoria and Sooke schools. I spend most of my summer time volunteering as an art teacher for various local fundraisers. My specialties are painting, drawing and weaving. Come join me in one of my art classes; you will have a blast!
Regina teaches Self-Portrait Drawing for youth and Watercolours for adults on Monday evenings at Oaklands Community Centre.
Sheila was born in the Philippines. Her mother contracted measles while Sheila was in utero and, as a result, she was born profoundly Deaf. Her family decided to move to Canada to provide Sheila with more opportunities as a Deaf person when she was 15 years old. Sheila attended the University of Victoria in the child and youth care program. Now, she's mom to four kids. Her husband and kids are hearing.
Sheila teaches American Sign Language on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 6-7 pm at Oaklands Neighbourhood House
Gareth Gaudin is a cartoonist born and raised in Victoria, BC. He created the comic book series Magic Teeth, The Perogy Cat, and The Monster Sisters. He was the Artist In Residence at the Royal BC Museum and now teaches comics at Camosun College and Oaklands Community Centre. He has worked in a vintage comic book shop since 1992 and has two young daughters who give him all the inspiration he'll ever need.
Gareth teaches cartooning classes for kids on Tuesdays from 6-7 pm at Oaklands Neighbourhood House.
Nelly was born and raised in a small village in the south of France where she spent 20 years before moving to Paris to study History and languages. She graduated in Slavic language and in social sciences and humanities from Sorbonne University. Nelly taught french classes to newcomers in Paris before moving to Moscow then Montreal where she lived and worked several years. Passionate about discovering cultures, she has traveled extensively in Asia and Oceania, volunteering with local communities on educational projects before settling down in Victoria.
Nelly teaches French for Beginners on Wednesdays from 7-8:30 pm at Oaklands Neighbourhood House.
My name is Theana.
I started dancing at the young age of three with the basics of ballet, tap, and jazz. Reaching my later years I trained in more styles such as: musical theatre, lyrical, and hip hop. Upon graduation I knew that dance would become an important aspect in my career so I pursued it professionally in Toronto, Ontario.
Now I am at a point in my life where I am wanting to share my love for dance with others. I bring passion and dedication to my classes and it’s students. I truly enjoy teaching my students technique while providing a fun, safe learning environment for them to really flourish and grow in with the right supportive approach. I am eagerly excited to bring my knowledge and experience to the young dance students at Oaklands Community Centre.
My name is Jeff Henderson, but feel free to call me Hendo. I was born and raised in Nova Scotia where I spent 19 years before moving to Ontario. I joined the Royal Canadian Navy and moved to Vancouver Island after my training was complete. I served for 4 years and decided I needed to leave that life behind and go after what I was truly passionate about.
Being in the military allowed me to see some interesting places that I probably never would have seen on my own. However, no matter where I went, I was always happy to come back home, to Victoria B.C. I love the lifestyle I can live while being on the island, it allows me to be active outdoors all year long.
Fitness is a passion of mine and helping people reach their health and fitness goals is such a great experience. I'm looking forward to the opportunities that lay before me and the people I get to meet along the way.
Jeff teaches Cardio Abs & Glutes from 7-8 pm and Circuit Training from 8-9 pm on Tuesdays at Oaklands Community Centre.
Erica Joelle has been a yoga instructor in Victoria, BC since 2017. Passionate about the holistic healing qualities of yoga, Erica completed her 200-hour teaching certification at Brahmanda School of Yoga in 2017, and is currently completing her Bachelor's degree in Exercise and Wellness at Camosun College. Erica continues to advance her education in Hatha Yoga under the guidance of experienced Yoga Therapist Michelle Rubin.
Erica combines her enthusiasm for yogic philosophy with her education in human anatomy and exercise physiology to create classes focused on student safety, alignment, and a rich mind-body connection. You can expect concise and tangible cues aimed at cultivating body awareness and safe alignment for your practice. Classes are designed to improve strength, mobility, and joint stability in a safe and attentive way. Erica warmly welcomes students of all levels into her Hatha Yoga classes.
Thomas Jono is a social dancer in Victoria’s Latin dance community. He has been dancing Salsa, Bachata for eight years, and dancing Kizomba for two years. Thomas has a passion to share his dancing knowledge and experience with anyone who wants to learn to dance and have fun, and growing the dance community. Thomas is also a member of the Latin Dance Canada family in Victoria.
Thomas teaches Beginner Bachata on Mondays from 6-7 pm and Beginner Kizomba on Tuesdays from 6-7 pm at Oaklands Community Centre.
Hi! I am Grace Khalifa and I am excited to share my knowledge of languages with you. I am a graduate of UVic with a double major in French Language and Literature and Hispanic and Italian Studies. I am a native speaker of French from Quebec and New Brunswick and will work hard sharing my love of learning languages so you achieve your goals. I am fluent in French, Spanish and Italian. I also speak German, Arabic and Portuguese. I tutor languages for travel, work, and the BC school curriculum. My passion is to seeing you succeed in whatever path you take! I believe if you think in your target language you will master it much faster. Look forward to seeing you soon!
Grace teaches a variety of beginner and intermediate language classes throughout the year at Oaklands Community Centre & Neighbourhood House.
Bio coming soon!
Melanie offers Pilates on Wednesdays from 6-7 pm and Bellyfit Flow on Wednesdays from 7:15-8:15 pm at Oaklands Community Centre.
Brett grew up in small town BC and is a passionate improviser and educator. She spent 11 years living, teaching and improvising in Scotland and Germany before moving to Victoria. Brett has been training, performing and teaching improvisational theatre for the past 10 years and in that time has also noticed the positive impact the principles and values of improv have had on her own life.
In her play-based workshops, Brett will guide you through a series of fun improv games and exercises, always leaving time for reflection on how these experiences mirror real life. These workshops are not performance-based, they are strictly play-based, and full of spontaneous laughter! Brett brings her enthusiasm and vitality to every workshop, and aims to provide an enjoyable experience for all participants.
Brett offers a variety of play-based workshops throughout the year at Oaklands Community Centre.
Alexandra Pony and 2x Olympic Rower Will Dean lead nutrition and fermentation workshops across North America. An advocate for empowering people to take their health in their hands, Alexandra and Will are passionate about educating people to nourish their bodies from the inside out.
Alexandra & Will teach various fermentation workshops at Oaklands Neighbourhood House throughout the year.
E-RYT 500; C-IAYT
Tanya Gita began practicing yoga in 2000 and is a graduate of the 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training at the Salt Spring Centre of Yoga. She has been teaching since 2011. She has completed the 500 hour Teacher Training at Mount Madonna and the 800 hour Yoga Therapy Program at Ajna Yoga College. She is a certified Yoga Therapist (C-IAYT) through the International Association of Yoga Therapists.
Tanya Gita is passionate about creating a safe, compassionate, inclusive space that welcomes everybody. Her gentle approach utilizes movement, breath, meditation, and philosophy to cultivate deep inner connection and overall well-being. She facilitates private sessions and public classes in Victoria and online.
Tanya offers Gentle Yoga on Mondays from 12:15-1:30 pm and Wednesdays from 9:30-10:45 am, Chair Yoga on Fridays from 11:15 am-12:15 pm, and various yoga workshops throughout the year at Oaklands Community Centre.
Oaklands Community Centre
Reception Hours: Monday-Friday from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
#1-2827 Belmont Avenue
Victoria, BC V8R 4B2
T: 250-370-9101 F: 250-370-9102
Oaklands Neighbourhood House
Little Acorn Hours: Monday-Friday from 7:30 am - 5:30 pm
2629 Victor Street
Victoria, BC V8R 4E3
T: 250-370-9101 F: 250-370-9159
Oaklands Community Association