Spotlight on Trustees: Jessica Green, Treasurer

Introducing Jessica Green #loveplaygrowdo @playgrowdo

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Jessica has worked in the communities of East London for the past 20 years. In line with her life’s mantra: love, play, grow, do: her roles have included being a special needs teaching assistant in a secondary school in East Ham, a public artist in schools and galleries in Bow and Greenwich, supporting start-up creative businesses in Brick Lane, connecting voluntary organisations across Tower Hamlets, and growing food in the shared green space of housing estates and public parks.

She has been practising yoga since 2002, it wasn’t until 2008 it got serious, with the intention of spending less and less time sitting at a desk, she began to unknowingly follow a path that eventually would lead to a yoga teacher training.  Once she realised the process of teaching yoga was more about the students that show up to the class, than the teacher at the front she became more and more enamoured with the practice.

Jessica is driven to make yoga available to all, taking classes out of studios and into schools, libraries, cafes, residential homes, community halls and parks.

She now teaches full time to a varied and diverse community in East London which include classes taught in schools with parents, teachers and students and for a Hackney-based project aimed at reducing isolation and aiding wellbeing in the over 50 community.

Jessica has studied yoga with Tara Judelle, Leila Sadeghee, Bridget Luff, Ross Rayburn and Sianna Sherman. She felt that the OMPowerment Project would be the best way to pay forward the benefits she had experienced from the wisdom and generosity of these teachers. Yoga for Jessica is a reciprocal act of offering and receiving.

Jessica has been supporting the OMPowerment Project since its inception. She was already part of an international community that was welcoming to refugees as she had been working in London since 2016 with female refugees sharing mindfulness, meditation, movement and breathing skills to help them cope with the symptoms of trauma and anxiety. As part of these classes, Jessica had witnessed the impact and benefits to participants from even a short session. She was drawn to the idea of imparting the skills to share a practice that can aid healing, relaxation and freedom. She was drawn to the idea of empowering refugees to continue practising without dependency on a visiting teacher and with skills that they could use wherever they went next.  

Jessica will lead an OMPowerment Training in Northern Greece in September 2018 to a community of Yazidis. Yazidis are a peaceful religious and ethnic minority who have lived in Iraq for centuries. ISIS invaded the Yazidi homeland in 2014. The Yazidi refugee community now in Northern Greece have survived genocide and suffered significant loss and grief before making the dangerous journey to Greece. Jessica said that thinking of the refugee community that she will teach she remembers how lucky she is to live a life that allows for choice, freedom, peace and joy.

Jessica teachers yoga in London, follow her @playgrowdo or visit www.jessicagreen.net

To donate or to find out more about how you can help The OMPowerment Project please visit the dedicated pages on our website: ompower.org