Outside of my private practice, I am particularly interested in working in group settings and in community settings. I enjoy working alongside fellow practitioners, facilitating transparency and creating pockets of healing where people can come together to relax, recharge and recenter.
Massage and the comfort of touch which is tender, is one of our simplest human needs. It is also something we can share with each other every day. It is an important part of my practice that my work is also accessible, affordable and touches everyday people.
Massage Shala finds its inspiration in the communal, more informal massage rooms of South East Asia. We are massage practitioners who enjoy the energy created in a shared space. The shared space creates a safe and open informal atmosphere, welcoming all. A container for community, connection and healing.
Massage Shala has run a multidisciplinary clinic in Centre 151 in Haggerston, Hackney since 2016. We now host event here on a quarterly basis. For more information, please email email@example.com.
Massage Shala also hosts a weekly sliding scale clinic as part of The Health Tree project to increase Social Prescription within Tower Hamlets. We are based at St Margaret’s House, Bethnal Green on Friday mornings 10am-1pm. Tickets can be purchased via the St Margaret’s website here.
HAPPY FEET HAPPY HEART
Happy Feet Happy Heart is a mobile foot massage project. The aim of this project is a cheap and cheerful foot massage popping up at local events. Based on Thai-style open air foot massage which springs up on the sidewalks of markets, food courts and local festivals, we bring our stylish set up out to the street, local fetes, at festivals, at community gatherings.
Happy Feet Happy Heart began in 2011 and has a summer residency at the Towpath Cafe in deBeauvoir.
A collaboration between Centre 151 and the Museum of the Home.
Centre 151, formally the VLC Centre (standing for Vietnam, Lao and Cambodia) collaborated with the Museum of the Home (formally the Geffrye Museum) to produce “nha” which is the Vietnamese word for “home”. The photographs, videos and sound recordings explored a refugee community’s concept of home after 40 years living in Hackney. I collected oral histories from our elders, and gave them foot massages.
The culmination of this project was a takeover day at the Museum of the Home by local Turkish, Cypriot and Vietnamese communities. Photographs and videos from Nha were exhibited. Happy Feet Happy Heart joined the festivities providing free foot massage.
CENTRE 151 MID AUTUMN FESTIVAL
I have co-ordinated Centre 151‘s annual Open Day since 2017. It is usually held in September around mid-Autumn festival. This is a fun-filled day when all the branches of Centre 151 come together. We celebrate with Vietnamese food, contemporary dance and other performances (including street dance, DJs, a choir and puppetry in the past), we also offer free classes in yoga and meditation, free massages, children’s arts and crafts in this fun-packed and joyful day of celebration.
Massage Lab is a swap session for massage practitioners to share and learn from each other.
Jo is the current Chair for the City of London and Shoreditch Neighbourhood Forum.