5 train for Laughter Club Cairns

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When I returned from laughter yoga teacher training in Bangalore with Dr Madan Kataria in March 2016, I made a vow:  I would do whatever I could to sow seeds of joyfulness through laughter yoga in regional Queensland.

That’s a big undertaking — Queensland is such a big state: 1.85 million km2 —and I am but one person.

However some years ago, a wise person suggested I consider this adage when looking at challenges—I alone can do this but I cannot do this alone—and it’s helped in so many aspects of life and business.

Cairns—some 1600+ kilometres north of my hometown of Brisbane—is a case in point. Last year, Cairns resident Maria was in Brisbane and attended one of my laughter club sessions. Laughter clubs are the heart of Dr Kataria’s global laughter yoga movement, free (or very low cost) volunteer-run social sessions of laughter yoga. Maria was immediately hooked by the happydemic that is laughter yoga and, on returning home, she talked to anyone and everyone about why Cairns did not have a laughter club. (It turned out that at least 2 individuals had attempted to get a club off the ground over the years but, as individuals, their energy soon wore out).

Nine months later, having launched a Facebook page ‘Cairns needs laughter yoga’ and drummed up enthusiasm and interest, as well as making contact with the 2 who’d tried before, Maria and I set a date to train certified laughter leaders and I headed north.

That was this past weekend. Please meet (above from left) Jo, Joanne, Maria, Claudia and Tracy.

One is a beauty therapist, two hold administrative roles, one works in special education and the fifth is a yoga teacher. They are friends—members of a community choir— and all intend to make a success of Laughter Club Cairns.

Cairns residents turn out for a pop-up laughter yoga session led by HeatherJoy Campbell on The Esplanade.

I have a really good feeling about this iteration of Laughter Club Cairns. The turn-out at a free pop-up laughter session I ran on The Esplanade late one afternoon a couple of days ahead of training reinforced interest (as have the FB views on its page this week).

It takes determination, collaboration and a big belief in the importance of community engagement to make a laughter club. I’m so grateful to have played a part in its resurrection in Cairns.


Interested in a laughter club in your Queensland regional town. Contact me and let’s start working out how to make it happen!


(c) HeatherJoy Campbell 2017

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Spreading wellness through laughter, seriously!


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It has been scientifically proven that 20 minutes of laughter reaps real physiological benefits.


“Our laughter leader training course was so well customised to the needs of our organisation and we received fabulous feedback from participants. Laughter yoga sessions are now on the calendar each week at our villages.”

— Jennie Hewitt, Positive Living Coordinator, Feros Care

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