Cedar Garden Sessions is back and as always, Hannah, Brand & Web Marketing Officer, is interviewing a member of the Penny Brohn UK team to find out more about them and the work they do behind the scenes to keep our services up and running.
This month, Hannah speaks with Therapy Lead, Michele Eve who has worked at Penny Brohn UK for almost 10 years in various roles.
Hi Michele, thanks for leaving our nice warm office to join me outside on this slightly nippy day!
No problem, it’s great to get outside in the fresh air and enjoy the garden.
Absolutely, so Michele, how did you come to work for Penny Brohn UK?
I was absolutely delighted one day in 2009, whilst on holiday in Cornwall, to get a telephone call asking me to cover some Healing sessions. A couple of years later I applied for a permanent post, left my job as a Playgroup Manager and joined the team. I knew about the Charity from my own experience as a client back in 2000 and then as a Publicity and Education Volunteer, so I knew that it was a special place.
Ah it’s fantastic. It’s great that you were able to apply your experiences as a client to working here in a therapeutic capacity. And you have a new role here now as Therapy Lead, is that right?
Yes that’s right. I am now Therapy Lead as well as Healer and Facilitator, so I have lots to do…
I can imagine! So, what does that involve?
Well, once a month I run a Retreat, which I love. We offer such precious space for people. I also facilitate the Living Well and Intro days. I see clients for Healing and Applied Relaxation, as well as running the Exploring Healing group with Roz Chissick. On top of all that I am working with Helen French and Sarah Mac to put new systems in place and develop Services. Oh and I organise the Staff Healing, and support the Intro Day Volunteers. Phew. No wonder you may just see a blur as I run past! [laughs]
[Laughs] That does sound like rather a lot to do! So in all of that, what is the most exciting thing you are working on at the moment?
I feel really fired up about the Garden and nature right now, and am looking at ways to increase connections to it as staff, and in our work with clients. The therapeutic uses of the garden, how it spirals out from that central atrium and takes people on a journey, is so wonderful. I can’t stop going on about it…as some will attest.
Indeed! It’s has been absolutely great working with you on the audio for the therapeutic journey through the garden, I can’t wait to get that out to our clients and supporters. So what would you say is your favourite part of the job so far?
Working with clients, definitely. Both during individual Healings or on courses. I love hearing the stories, wisdom and inspiration, but also seeing how people weave their own experience with our knowledge and approach to create something truly unique. There is something magical in the synergy!
That’s lovely to hear – and a common theme in our Cedar Garden Sessions. After all, we’re all here because we want to help. Is there a moment that stands out to you as a particular highlight of your time at Penny Brohn so far?
There have been many – a funny one was back when I was a publicity volunteer and the journalist interviewing me asked if there was any way I “could wear a blouse” instead of what I had on already! [laughs]
[Laughs] I wouldn’t be sure how to take that!
Exactly! [Laughs] But, Speaking about Healing at the Integrative Medicine conference just recently was special to me. Although I think the most special moment was probably meeting Pat, who set me on a path that changed my life. That tops the lot.
Ah yes, she does sound as though she was an incredible woman. I wasn’t fortunate enough to meet her but you only have to hear what everyone says about her to know how brilliant she was. So, Michele, we’re onto our final question… the anticipated biscuit battlefield. What is your favourite dunkable biscuit?
[Laughs] Umm… probably a Digestive. Without chocolate though, as that just melts in your tea!
Another classic Digestive fan! That’s a popular one… but I don’t know if it shifts the podium around just yet. I love a bit of tea-melted chocolate!
Oh no! That’s not for me…