I am Nidhi Amanda Chaitow, a multi-faceted and experienced drumming and rhythm therapist, psychosocial counsellor and group facilitator. With more than 25 years' experience as a therapeutic drumming facilitator, life skills educator, conscious counsellor and mentor, I have worked for many different clients and organisations in Cape Town, Johannesburg, the Garden Route and around the world. Based in the Garden Route and Cape Town, I offer a wide range of therapeutic workshops and programmes. Using the powerful tools of mindfulness, somatic movement, drumming and spiritual connectivity for integration, transformation, and healing, I am passionate about empowering people to maximise their potential and celebrate their own unique rhythm.
Having run the Drum Cafe on the Garden Route for several years, I discovered first-hand the remarkable healing power of individual and collective rhythm. I have taught transformational drumming, life skills and spiritual awareness to individuals, groups, institutions, non-profit organisations and NGOs across South Africa. These include Lifeline Garden Route, Hospice Knysna, Oasis Addiction Centre in Plettenberg Bay, Eco Ed in Harkerville, Minnesota State University, Afrika Tikkun, Nechama, Jewish Seniors Cape Town, and currently KILT (Knysna Integrated Learning and Teaching).
In 2005 I was one of the co-founders of Eden Campus (now called Tsiba Eden), near George in the Garden Route. The campus officially opened in February 2006 with 80 students from various local communities and I held the position of Campus Director and Lifeskills Educator.
In 2007 I began participating in Knysna Hospice's Caring for Carers research programme, for which I created a modality called "Finding your Rhythm". This programme continued until 2010.
In 2008 I was the Facilitator for a group of students from Minnesota State University who were conducting a service learning programme with students from Eden Campus. Thereupon, I was invited to co-author a paper for the Psychological Journal of USA. Subsequently, I wrote, developed and facilitated various empowerment, drumming and life skills programmes.
In 2016 I completed a Bachelor of Applied Social Sciences Degree at The South African College of Applied Psychology (SACAP) in Claremont, Cape Town (www.sacap.edu.za) with additional modules in Grief and Loss, Somatic Counselling and Palliative Care. Thereafter, I worked as a volunteer bereavement counsellor for Nechama (a Jewish bereavement counselling service) and began my own counselling and rhythm practice.
In 2015, while studying, I had been contracted to run a programme for Afrika Tikkun in Mfuleni, Cape Town. In this programme, for which my contract was renewed in 2016, I taught Drumming and Lifeskills to groups of learners and their facilitators. This was the forerunner to my "Rhythms of You" Empowerment Programme, which I am currently running in Knysna in association with KILT.
To add to my basket of skills, I have completed certificate training in Music in Creative Detoxification and Rehabilitation, and in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) with Older People. Some of my other areas of research include :
the psychosocial aspects of trauma
the precursors for addiction and abuse
psycho-sexual health and wellbeing
Currently, I run my Conscious Counselling, Transitions to Eldership and Conscious Rhythm practice on-line and in both the Garden Route and Cape Town, gently guiding and nurturing my clients, and facilitating therapeutic workshops with the focus on self-love, peace, connectivity and transformation.
#healingsouthafrica is a campaign I began in December 2015. It aims to heal our beautiful land, and bring light into the darkness. If we collectively pray to fill our consciousness with grace, peace and love; if we stay mindful of our thoughts and our language; if we treat each other and our Mother Earth with respect - then we can grow a healing revolution and be the change we want to see in our country.