I was invited to host and MC an event showcasing the work of a group of local creative artists from diverse communities in South Birmingham, funded by the Arts Council and in collaboration with The Drum.
The aim of the event was to promote positive mental wellbeing and health through the arts.
As host and MC, it was my responsibility to engage with each act in advance and understand the concept behind their performance. This called upon both my public-speaking and facilitation skills. The event featured spoken word artists Christian Deveaux (Boy October) & Kapes, and Dance Teacher & Performer Thomas Oflaherty.
In 2016 I presented a Pecha Kucha to the team at Hawn Foundation UK, London, (founded by Hollywood actress Goldie Hawn) on the story of my work in meditation and relaxation with young people in a variety of educational settings, dating as far back as 1998.
My links with the foundation continue, as I underwent training with them in June 2018, enabling me to deliver MINDUP Mindfulness sessions to young people of all ages in schools, or through charities, local authorities and other organisations.
I was privileged to be asked to give a presentation showcasing and outlining the story of my business to around 50 ladies at a business networking event in Birmingham in May this year. Held in a very nice hotel in nearby Solihull, with conference facilities, I addressed the audience in a very frank and honest way about my life and how I came to do what I do, and why I believe this makes me one of the best at what I have to offer.
With 10 active and successful groups across the Midlands and around 350 current annual members, I was fortunate to be selected to address the delegates after lunch and was very touched by the enthusiastic, positive and encouraging comments I received afterwards, both in person and on social media. In fact the dialogue continued on social media, with me updating fellow members on the group's private page as to the successful outcomes to my story! As a result I received a number of endorsements and recommendations for public speaking from fellow business ladies on my LinkedIn profile.
In June I was invited as a guest to be interviewed by Sara Shoesmith, who runs Only Human Therapy. We discussed common causes of stress and anxiety in children and shared tips, advice and signposts on how to support your child with difficult emotions. Only available to members of her private group, 'WE ARE ONLY HUMAN', Sara was thrilled that the interview reached almost 300 views and is the most highly viewed interview that she has conducted to date.
Having addressed audiences and undertaken public speaking from very early on in my career, I decided to attend a course in February of this year addressing the more specific role of hosting or MC-ing an event. It was an extremely interesting day and part of the package was to return to co-host an evening event at the venue in the very trendy, 'hipster-central', Dalston in East London. I am happy to say that I passed with flying colours, with my professional co-host and mentor describing me as 'a natural' and instructing me to 'go back to Birmingham and start hosting your own events.' This has yet to happen, but I am very happy to host YOUR events, with a few stories, gems and laughs along the way. I have though MCed a number of events for other people and was entrusted with the role of ' stand-in MC' at a function at a local football club in the event of the actual MC's wife going into labour 5 weeks early. And she did! But he still made it.