Complementary therapist, author and tutor Mary Atkinson has been recognised with the title 2020 FHT Complementary Therapist of the Year. Mary has been a Chichester Copywriter client for over nine years and it’s wonderful to see her talents and contributions celebrated by the Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT).
Chichester-based Mary has supported thousands of people across the world throughout the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic by sharing live Story Massage sessions online. Joined by her handsome co-host, Emmanuel the Bear, Mary’s brought love, light and laughter to viewers of all ages with her live social media videos. It’s about time Mary (if not her cuddly companion) was recognised for her kindness.
Mary Atkinson Meets Chichester Copywriter
Katy of Chichester Copywriter first met award-winning Mary at one of her book-signing events. They hit it off and when Mary needed some social media marketing training she called on Katy’s help. Facebook and Twitter were covered in the one-to-one social media training sessions and, throughout the years, it’s been fantastic to see Mary’s progress using the digital marketing platforms to further her health and wellbeing career.
As well as creating a solid following for her Indian Head Massage training programme using Facebook groups, Mary’s spread the word about the Story Massage Programme worldwide. This even helped her to take massage stories to Japan and share its benefits with survivors of the 2011 tsunami.
Evolution of the Story Massage Programme
Mary co-founded the Story Massage Programme with Sandra Hooper in 2013. The innovative concept is based on ten simple massage strokes that are used to illustrate the words of a story.
With the help of social media to publicise their self-published book, Once Upon a Touch…: Story Massage for Children, the ladies landed themselves a traditional publishing deal. This led to a suite of spin-off products and opportunities and was the launching pad for their growing international Story Massage Programme online training.
Combining two things close to our Chichester Copywriter’s heart – wellbeing with storytelling – Katy was the editor for their first book and has continued to support Mary and Sandra in their journey.
Lightness in Lockdown
As the UK entered the first lockdown in March 2020, Mary looked to find a way to continue sharing this simple form of nurturing, positive touch with as many people as possible. She produced a free booklet of 36 new massage stories and was overwhelmed by the initial response from over 2000 people in schools, family homes and community groups.
A teacher then approached her about starting live Facebook, Instagram and YouTube sessions. Mary and her trusty teddy, Emmanuel, then took to the screen twice weekly to share different follow-along massage stories. For many, especially those looking after children with profound and multiple learning difficulties, these live sessions provided a focus for the week. They brought connection, fun and relaxation in an uncertain world.
A thoroughly deserving complementary therapist
The award would have been presented to Mary in person at an annual conference organised by the FHT – the UK’s leading professional association for complementary, holistic beauty and sports therapists. Due to COVID-19, this year’s celebrations were conducted remotely, as part of a special online FHT Excellence Awards Presentation.
President of the FHT, Christopher Byrne, says: “At the FHT, we know the incredible work that our members are doing on a day-to-day basis, to help others. The FHT Excellence Awards are a great opportunity to celebrate these achievements and show the world at large what a difference therapies can make to others’ health and wellbeing, through real-life stories.
“Throughout COVID-19, I’m incredibly proud of FHT members such as Mary, who have really gone the extra mile to find new ways to ensure that those most in need can continue to feel nurtured and connected to others, at a time when physical touch has often not been possible or greatly restricted. Her work is exemplary of the wonderful and varied types of support our members have to offer in order to support others’ physical and mental wellbeing. Well done and thank you for all you have done to help those in your local community and beyond.”
Delighted with her accolade, Mary adds: “This is such an honour. It felt a privilege to find a way of helping to bring comfort and reassurance to families at such a difficult time. This award recognises the power of positive, nurturing touch for children and adults of all ages and abilities.”
Congratulations, Mary. You’ve done beary well indeed!
Digital marketing for health and wellbeing clients
Mary Atkinson isn’t the only complementary therapist that Chichester Copywriter has had the pleasure to work with. Katy’s written SEO website copy for everyone from aromatherapists, hypnotherapists and Reiki Masters to kinesiologists, homeopathists and reflexologists. Health, wellbeing and beauty industry clients who have turned to Katy for social media marketing management (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn) include a Sussex pain clinic and a boutique non-surgical skin clinic. With a keen interest in natural therapies and products, Katy has also written guest blog posts for the international brand Green People.
Get in touch with Katy of Chichester Copywriter now to see how she can help grow your holistic therapy treatment centre or make your beauty business boom.