Thursday, 18 October 2007


Respecting, valuing and understanding each other is a good place to start.

Universal Connection has organized the Peace Week launch for the last two years. What an event - what a lot of fantastic talent in our community.

Peace Week is intended to steer people away from gangs and violence in our community. Through out the week organizers will use every method they can to get the message out. This will include everything from school visits to running a radio station. But it’s not just about peace on the streets, it also about peace in the home because that’s where quiet often problems begin. It’s about working together as a family unit and challeging problems that arise. It's not just about guys on the streets or girls out of control. What about our life - do we face up to our problems or kick them under the carpet?

At the previous launches we’ve had singers, rappers, local designers, poets, speakers, and a youth drama group who have contributed to the successes of the launch.

We've had a few hiccups that has been sorted out; the main thing is the everyone feeling happy, appreciated and the audience enjoying the show.

We put on these events to improve the quality of our lives also giving people an opportunity to show what they can do in front of a live audience. It also keeps them busy planning and preparing their piece - that’s positivity.
It's about respect, sharing, team work, self esteem and whether it's your first time or not on stage - you shine!

Being artistic gives you the chance to perform issue base things or about topics that interest you. ITS YOUR VOICE through music and dance.

Are you always singing, dancing rapping, acting, reading poetry or imagining you’re in a boy or girl band? Could you perform in front of a packed audience?

Contact us: Esther Clarke
Universal Connection
Flint Glass Works
Ancoats Urban Village
M4 6JW
07931 779 025

My Load

Everything piling on top I can hardly breath.

My partner and I went to
my office to pack up all
my stuff ready to take to
my new premises that I'm sharing with a colleague. Everyone was lifting, carrying and feeling the strain. They were stumbling, swaying and sweating at the brow..

I must admit I was also feeling the pressure watching them - wondering how long they'll take with it all
- my eyes were getting tired sitting at the computer waiting to shut it down. I did feel a bit guilty but someone had to watch the other stuff waiting to be shifted.

I did my part too, holding the doors and lifts open, and making sure they were OK!

Observing is very important
We might use visualisation. This involves using your mind’s eye to create a motion picture. Feelings of confidence in your ability to be successful should be enhanced as a result of regular visualisation.

The key is to do it in real time, seeing and feeling the actions.

After all that hard work- A hot cuppa of tea.

I felt so tired after all that visualisation...

Monday, 15 October 2007

Friday, 12 October 2007

Climbing The Hill


Esther Clarke a mother based in Moss Side, Manchester. Like any mother she has to juggle her family life and career, however she still finds time to be involved in a huge number of Dance and Music projects in her City.

Her parents are originally from St John in Barbados and settled in the UK in the 1960's. Esther is director of Universal Connection, who are the pioneers of Soca Aerobics dance in Manchester. Soca Aerobics is a great way to exercise using Dance and Soca Music from the Caribbean.

Since launching Universal Connection in 1999 Esther has worked with a huge number of Schools, Youth Groups, Community Centres. Local Authorities, and Festivals to share this special approach to exercise.

Esther also teaches Afro-Caribbean dance and drumming in Schools, Colleges and Community Groups using a workshop type format, so that everyone can experience Caribbean Culture for themselves.

In addition, she established Female Fusion who are an RnB Dance Group for 16 to 20 year olds and Universal Connection Youth, the younger version for 7-16 year olds. The latter are themselves in the process of preparing to perform in Signatures Dance Showcase to be held in Manchester in October 2007.

As an event coordinator for Carisma, a Hulme based Community Alliance, Esther also organises the Peace Week Launch in Hulme in Manchester. This is a youth talent show which gives local young people an opportunity to express themselves through music and dance in a positive way. This event has been completely sold out in the last 2 years and is a well renowned annual event.

Finally, Esther is a member of a band called Kokoriko, playing the percussion. The band plays a mixture of Jazz, and Afro-Beat and Latin.

Thursday, 4 October 2007

Diabetic - treasure your feet

I've been getting pains in my knees for a while now so I decided it was time to visit the doctors.

Before any treatment he suggested I have a diabetes check because it runs in my family.

My aunt loss her toes due to her lack of care. If you don't look after yourself properly you can even lose the whole foot ( .

As a general rule we should always wash our feet properly and make sure we dry between the toes to avoid bacteria growth.

I remember watching my mum go through all the tests to make sure everything is how it should be.

Your cholesterol and food intake can have bad effects on your health if you don't monitor yourself properly.
Cholesterol forms an essential part of a healthy diet but too much in the blood can lead to health problems. It is not necessary to cut all fats out of your diet. The trick is to replace the bad fats with good ones.

Many diabetics have learnt to minister their own medication i.e insulin, check their own blood level and sugar intake.

Thursday, 27 September 2007

Clear The Way!

I feel so tired and exhausted that I could just disappear!

I say this year after year, "going to keep my book keeping up to date", "going to keep my book keeping up to date"," going to keep my book keeping up to date".

Last week I started doing my books. One whole year to get through, I've not even filled out my tax return form yet! I know the dead line is fast approaching 30th September for handing it into Inland revenue.

I started planning how I'm going to deal with it all. Two young children, band and dance group amongst other things.

I told myself that it would have to be realistic, one month a day. It was going OK until other things cropped up - I started to miss valuable days.

I sat down one evening and checked through my diary and put in the days when I would do my accounts. If it was a clear day then it was mine. Even if something came up I was unable to deal with it and that's putting my things first.