December 2020 Aide of the Month — Miya Walker
December Aide of the Month, Miya Walker, is living her dream. She has a career doing exactly what she loves: caring for others. For her, a career isn’t about making money—it’s about making a difference.
“What I do for CCOR is what I went to college for,” says Miya, who has an associate degree in applied science in social work from Monroe Community College. Miya goes to work every day, not to get a paycheck but to improve her clients’ lives. “I’ve seen that you can make a difference just by smiling at somebody in the morning—just by getting up, going to their house, and making them breakfast. You’re making a difference just by being there for them, having a conversation with them. It was never about the money for me. It’s about enjoying what you do when you go to work.”
In addition to caring for her clients’ needs, Miya makes a difference in a more profound way. She uses her training in social work and her passion for psychology to help her clients feel better. She pays close attention to her clients’ feelings and gently talks them through their difficulties. “We talk about the day they had or the week they had or the things that are upsetting them, ways they can troubleshoot some issues if they are having any type of problems.” Every day Miya asks herself, “What kind of conversation can I have today to make the client feel okay? What can I do inside their home that can make them happier than they were?” The answers to these questions are what make Miya an exceptional aide.
Miya sparkles with compassion and generosity. But if Miya is a spark, then her mother, Yulandia, would have to be a powerhouse. “A lot of what I do is because of the path she took,” says Miya. Yulandia worked for over 30 years for the city school district, helping children with mental and intellectual disabilities. In her personal life, she’s always taking care of other families and being a companion to those in need. To her own family, Yulandia was a supermom—in addition to raising her four children, she adopted five more and took an additional little boy in. (That’s ten in total!) All of this she accomplished while bravely facing many health issues, including several back surgeries, two hip replacements, asthma, and a metal rod implanted in her shoulder.
But it wasn’t just her mother that inspired Miya. Her father also made a difference in his daughter’s life. Though he passed away two years ago, he made time to talk with Miya about her career and planning for her future. Everything Miya has accomplished stems from the inspiration of her parents.
In her free time, Miya loves watching movies. But nothing can beat the fulfillment she gets from a career in compassion. “I enjoy what I do. I really do. I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”