Nicole van Zomeren
I was born and grew up in Australia. After 15 years in the UK, I have recently returned to my roots.
A few years before leaving Australia for an ‘around the world adventure’, my father died of cancer. He was strong in body and mind, and he was determined to fight this illness, until the final few days when he surrendered and said goodbye to us.
Our family created a very memorable celebration of his life; we sung around his coffin at the funeral, just like we had in the hospital for the weeks and months he was ill. I hung the positive affirmation posters that had brightened his stark hospital walls on fabric for all to see at his wake. Little did I know that years later these experiences would form the cornerstone of my future work.
I set up my own company, in Health and Wellbeing. Beginning my career as a dance coach in Australia I have worked and studied worldwide, as a Coach, Massage Therapist, Yoga and Meditation Teacher, Reiki practitioner and Supervisor.
In 2013 I was called to a training that saw me ordain as an independent Minister. And as I saw the threads of my dad’s life and death weave into my training, I was deeply drawn to ensuring those who desire it, should also experience the profound ways we can honour our loved ones by celebrating their lives in meaningful ways.
Jean - Chairwoman & Creative Director
Having arrived into this world in 1939, two months before World War II began, I can remember ration books and gas masks! As a very sensitive child I cried bitterly when flowers in a vase died, not to mention the anguish of losing my darling Dad. The war years were lean, if we didn’t have it, my Dad would make it, he was a master of ‘make do and mend'.
I grew up with my brother and sister in the countryside, and our greatest treat was to go for walks with our Dad. He taught us the names of the wild flowers, butterflies, birds and trees, instilling in me a deep love and respect for nature that would stay with me always. It now gives me great pleasure to share this knowledge with my three grandchildren...
Amanda - Director of Education
I am the founder of Ancient & Sacred Trees, with over 50,000 members and rising. Its’ ethos is PositiviTree for CommuniTree celebrating peoples ancient and sacred connections with trees. AST is an eco-activist, mental health and wellbeing group aiming to rewild humans, campaigning for cultural change, protecting and planting trees. The passion members have for the natural world has really inspired me so much and gives me hope for the future of our planet. AST is now a Community Interest Company.
I am passionate about ecology, wellbeing and social justice. I am a qualified teacher and have a BA Hons and PGCE in Art, as well as being a therapeutic arts coach, writer, historian, storyteller, blessing giver, sound healer, forest guide and tree temple keeper. The happiness and wellbeing of people and the planet have informed my career for nearly thirty years...
Dawn – Director of Communications
I am sitting by the grave of my mum and dad with tree blossoms tumbling from the skies.
The blossoms dancing in the wind making me reflect on my life and feel so blessed at what an enriched life I have lived thus far.
For more than 30 years I have been an owner of multiple award-winning successful businesses that have bought me great material wealth but the focus on wealth…
…So, over the past 10 years I have been discovering and using tools and techniques to get me from Business burn out and wasting fortunes to finding fun, freedom and fulfilment. I offer the tools and techniques I discovered in motivational talks and workshops…
Jo - Director of Standards
My name is Jo Nicoles and I operate Three Shires Independent Funeral Services based in Congleton Cheshire.
My father died when I was just 10 years old and my mother followed when I was only 29. Through seeing their funeral services first-hand, I felt there was something missing that made me think I could do it better. That was in 2004 and it made me determined that I could and should look to do this as a career path.
A friend’s father was a funeral director and I asked him for help. He gave me some work experience which I then used to acquire work with larger funeral homes. After 14 years of this... in 2018 I set up my own business and have taken pride in giving people the send-off they deserve, whilst offering the families the facilities, service, and value they need...