I’m on my way … uh–huh, uh–huh, uh–huh, uh–huh! Only a Proclaimers song (the best song ever??) can convey the excitement I feel to be heading off to Coimbatore in Southern India for the next six months to the world changing Isha Foundation. I’ll be volunteering there, teaching drama at The Home School. Or as Sadhguru (Isha founder, yogi and spiritual master) would say – I’ll be there to learn joy from the children. I fly out of Glasgow airport on 8th May.
Before I go I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who’s been involved with Joyworks! in any way. We just had the most beautiful, special and hilarious free event at Woodside Halls in Glasgow last night- the last Joyworks! event I’ll deliver for 6 months (in the UK anyway). We had a great turnout and a fantastic mixture: some were new to Joyworks, some were old pals and of course there was the wonderful Joyworks! team. We had such a laugh with our trademark song uh–huh, uh–huh, uh–huh, uh–huh! Personally I get so much joy out of watching the journey that everyone makes in such a short session. From separateness to connectedness, from judgement to open hearted hilarity, seeing the sparkle that appears in everyone’s eyes. Words don’t ever do it justice. The experience is out of this world. Such magic.
The Joyworks! team
I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone in the Joyworks! team …
- Michelle Galloway who’ll soon be delivering Joyworks! Zumba & Laugh classes. Her generosity of spirit and openness outshines us all
- Amy McDonald of Creative Training Unlimited for her organisation, professionalism and wit
- Spanish laughter facilitator Melissa Rodriguez for her sassiness and charm
- Talented drama and Yoga Teacher Angie D’Arcy for her humour and fun
- Saras Feejio, clown performer for her vulnerability and presence
- Our Joyworks! Nurse, Helen Gallagher for her work with us with Scottish Autism and on our BBC Comedy events at the Edinburgh Festival and her calmness and caring.
Thanks also to the wonderful Steph Mayo, a counsellor and yoga teacher who continues to deliver laughter in nursing and residential homes. Think of Mother Earth. This is Steph. And thank you to our friends Susan McGregor at Hopscotch Theatre, to Martin Guaghan at Napier University for spreading laughter yoga to students, and to the lovely Tsering Chodrun for all her work in Brechin. Finally a big thank you to the talented and clever man Craig Steele for all the IT help-soon to come across the miles.
I’d also like to mention our old staff and supporters who have gone on to pastures new. Thank you to the beautiful and talented Shona Miller (no relation), now working for the NHS, who was there right at the beginning. Thank you also to the oldest soul in the youngest body Anne Schmitd who’s back home in Germany doing fabulous work at a women’s shelter. Thank you to Zimbabwean Lisa Uckchara who came on board after our work with leadership students at Stirling University. She’s doing her final year of exams and will no doubt sail through them. I’d also like to take this time to remember our friend Sandra De Munoz, a Choose Life Co-Ordinator, who passed away tragically so young last year. She was such an out-of-the-box creative thinker and a huge advocate of Joyworks! Her memory is a reminder to live fully in the day. As my papa would say when I asked him how he was “Great, of course, I woke up!”
I’ve made so many beautiful friends from delivering Joyworks! including Lindsay Bennet who booked us for an event then came along to our weekend training. She works within the corporate field for BNP Paribas and has such a sense of fun. And last but not least a big thank you and cheesy grin to Matthew Millar (also no relation!) who attended events for over four years and who brought life, laughter and the occasional cheeky burp to our events.
Ok I just have to mention Marianne Halavage (sorry Marianne!) who I first met when she came along to write a feature on our work for the Herald. A talented but humble lassie and a good friend.
We have two staff teambuilding events this week. We’ll be returning to Carr Gomm (Supporting people and Communities) and to Share Training for Housing Associations. Amy McDonald, Angie D’Arcy and Michelle Galloway will be bringing on the fun.
Today we’re busy preparing a whole weekend of joy, positivity and laughter for our acclaimed Certified Laughter Yoga Leadership course. There are only two places left …
I know I’m leaving Joyworks! in great hands. Deepest gratitude to the Joyworks! team for making my journey possible. It will be a wild ride. I’ll keep you posted. Uh–huh, uh–huh, uh–huh, uh–huh …