Friday 20th March marks International Day of Happiness, however it seems everyone is a little bit late to our happiness party as we have been spreading the joys of happiness since 2019!
We launched our Happiness Movement last year as a centre-wide campaign which aimed to spread positivity and happiness to our shoppers, retailers and wider community. We combined fun facts with engaging activities to make our visitors feel better in themselves.
It really has gone from strength to strength and has been embraced by everyone who has engaged with it.
Who can remember our ‘Happy Zone’ installations which encouraged mindfulness, gave interesting facts about the brain and the effects of kindness and smiling, alongside doodle-style icons, shapes and colours designed to increase a positive mood, self-esteem and an optimism for the future.
Did you visit our indoor garden and take a moment to be surrounded by live plants and soothing bird sounds? Perhaps you paid a visit to our bubble-gum machines which showed levels of happiness, or did you have a go in our head boxes and experience a range of happiness boosting sounds.
During the 6-week school summer holidays, we had students from NCS volunteer with us to put on the ‘Happy Festival’. They helped organise a silent disco, interacting with customers to create a string wall mapping out what made shoppers happy and a smile wall, capturing hundreds of different Doncaster smiles. They used the money raised each week to put on themed afternoon teas and pamper days for service users at an Age UK Doncaster facility –spreading the happiness further.
As part of our campaign we were approached by Doncaster Mind who wanted to partner with us for World Mental Health Day. This initiative saw us launch the Head Shed – which was an enclosed shed space where visitors could talk privately to a qualified counsellor.
We really hope that everyone reading this has engaged with our Happiness App, which is still accessible online. This is where you can design and personalise a greeting card and send it to a loved one via email or social media. If you haven’t done this yet, then what better way to celebrate the National Day of Happiness then by popping on the app and sharing happiness with someone special.
Make sure you tag Frenchgate into your happiness posts today by using #Frenchgateshareyourhappy - we can’t wait to see them!