The Co-Leaders!

By | June 8, 2011


Last week I briefly introduced you to the people behind the project, and this week I would like to spotlight the co-leaders for the Our Best Day So Far class over the summer. So, I asked Amy Henson and Brendan O’Hara some questions!

How did you get involved in Our Best Day So Far? What made the project most appealing?

Amy Henson: I stopped in the class after having seen it listed in the senior center list of activities.  I had been volunteering at the center and also joined YOGA there.  Writing has always been one of my interests and I found the class to be fun.

Brendan O’Hara: My involvement in “Best Day” grew out of a conversation that I had with Benita early in the Spring.  It became very apparent, after only a few minutes of conversation, that I wanted to be a part of Benita’s exuberant personality and her audacious vision for the organization.  I believed in what she was telling me and felt moved to use any talents that I have to help bring fruit to the organization.  The project itself blends some of my biggest passions in life; writing, teaching, and storytelling. Through the project I will be able to pursue all three!  The other big appeal is the opportunity to work with seniors, a demographic that is very exciting and full of wonder. I look forward to learning from the seniors that are involved in the project.

Why do you think this class is important?

Amy: I find that this particular class is informal, senior friendly and it creates an environment that fosters friendship and self expression.  Seniors have a great need to be “heard”.

Brendan: It seeks to build a strong and encouraging community. Plain and simple.  Building a life-giving community is an aspect of life that is extremely undervalued in our society. Quality of life is improved when people feel connected to something ‘bigger than themselves.’ “Best Day” seeks to provide this quality of life for people, thus making it invaluable. The project is also important because it attempts to bridge generational gaps between two distinctly different, but distinctly wonderful demographics.  Two distinctly different groups teaching each other, and in turn learning from each other, makes this organization both attractive and unique.

What are your hopes for the class, the blog, and the future of the satellite?

Amy: I pray that this class continues to sustain its current level of service to the community. Hopefully, it will be able to meet any changes needs among its members.

Brendan: I have high hopes for the class that I will be co-facilitating. The number one goal is to create a comfortable and joyful atmosphere that will allow group members to experience the ‘best day’ of their week. If we can do that, no matter what else happens, we have done our job. Additionally, I am excited for our blog to interconnect people from across the world. The blog will invite people from all corners of the earth into our humble project, and if we do it right, the blog will inspire and encourage those people.  The future of this entire ‘best day’ project is extremely bright. The momentum and energy for this project is akin to a star that is ready to burst into a supernova.

Do you have a personal reason for becoming a co-leader? (Is there anyone or any event, etc. that led you to be interested in this?)

Amy: I am always interested in new things and in volunteering so I offered my service and was accepted.

What do you want people to know about you?

Amy: I am aspiring to be a healthy, happy, productive and helpful senior citizen. I thrive in creativity of all sorts and this will help me to continue my growth. I refuse to “be old” even though I am aging. I love life, people and am searching for my purpose in it all.

Brendan: WRITING is a thrill of mine. It is an art form that I use to connect with my emotions, my experiences, my God, and the people and greater world that surrounds me.  It is an outlet and a way to escape the weight on my shoulders.  It is an inlet into new discoveries and creative ideas. TEACHING is another thrill for me.  It provides me a way to lead, instruct, and connect with people.  Teaching teenagers for the past 6 years has been one of the best and most life-giving decisions that I have made in my lifetime.  Finally, storytelling is a thrill for me. I can remember sitting with my grandfather and just listening to him talk and share stories from his life. I soaked in his words, his wisdom, and the fantastic and creative personality that he had.  A large part of my interest in storytelling comes from him.

I have said it before, and I’ll say it again: I am so excited for this class to begin, and learning new things about the people I’ll be working with once it starts is really the icing on the cake!

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