The M&T group, so called, because they faithfully come every Monday and Thursday to organise activities and sponsor meals for our Kang Le Day Hospice patients. Led by Manjula, the M&T ladies never fail to bring laughter and joy to our patients and staff. Every M&T volunteer is able to lead laughter yoga sessions and our patients are engaged in playful exercise that promote laughter and wellness. The practice, designed by Indian doctor Madan Kataria in 1995, combines playful group exercises and deep breathing to promote wellness, happiness and lots of laughter.
One of our most loyal and passionate supporter and friend, the M&T volunteer group, has recently outdone themselves again. They meticulously planned and delivered a most amazing “Justice League” make believe experience for our Day Hospice patients. From the deco, to the costumes and the utensils, everything was themed with the characters from Justice League. There were huge prints of Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman adorning the walls. Hanging gaily all over the Day Hospice were glittering streamers and Christmas decorations, to match the Christmas spirit. There were life size cutouts of Superman and Cat woman for photo taking.
As each patient arrived, the five (due to COVID restrictions, only five volunteers are allowed) ladies, carrying sparkling poms poms, welcomed them with loud cheers of “ho ho ho – Merry Christmas”. A Santa hat was put on each patient and presented with a gift and every patient was beaming brightly. After their morning snacks, the patients were ushered to start on laughter yoga. Each patient was then dressed in a Superman cape, provided with groovy spectacles and readied for the day’s activities. A ‘Superman’ cake and a log cake was cut and the M&T ladies put on a dance item, to loud applause. A heart-warming Christmas carol sung by one of the M&T ladies, a professional singer, was played on TV. She could not come, as there were already five volunteers, but she would not be defeated and personally video-taped her song for our patients.
The games started and every patient was excited and raring to go. Much thought had gone into the games. The M&T ladies felt that it was important for the patients to feel empowered. So they devised a game in which an M&T lady would sit on the floor with a soft net draped over her. She was ‘trapped’ and needed help. The ‘rescuer’, our patient was given a clipper pole to try to lift the net, which was trapping our damsel in distress. When the patient successfully lifted the net, he was lauded as a hero. Quite dramatic, with screams of ‘Help! Help!’ by our lady volunteer, but it was very meaningful for each patient. Full marks for our wonderful M&T volunteers.
Lunch was next and on the dining tables were carefully laid out ‘Superman’ plates, ‘Batman’ napkins and red and green forks and spoons. The food was delicious and the patients had nothing but praise and appreciation for the M&T ladies for arranging such an unforgettable ‘Justice League’ make believe experience.
I was extremely touched by the effort put in by the M&T ladies. Everything was carefully planned and laid out, all for the benefit of our patients. They were meticulous and really thoughtful. In their hearts and minds, nothing was too small nor unimportant for our patients. Our staff also enjoyed themselves.
I am thankful to Manjula and the M&T group and all the many other volunteers who have dedicated so much of their time and energy to bring joy and the Christmas spirit to our patients this year. What a wonderful way to end 2020!