Finding Unremitting Solace with Coty Benrimoj

Coty-&-Emily Low-Unremitting-Solace-Book-CoverFull article by Jo Ward appears in the May 2016 edition of Insight Magazine Gibraltar.

In an increasingly stressful world, many people look for inspiration and guidance and there can be no one more qualified to help others than someone who has personally battled with the black dog called depression.

Coty Benrimoj is a home grown Gibraltarian, born in the 1950s. Her journey through life has not just been a spiritual one, but it has also been a physical experience that saw her relocating from Gibraltar to the USA in 1983. Now as a motivational speaker, poet and author, Coty’s passion is to help others.

Returning to Gibraltar for a two week stay in April, during which time she gave a presentation to raise funds for local mental illness charity Clubhouse Gibraltar “A month before my breakdown I started writing my book, Unremitting Solace, waking up in the middle of the night to write down my thoughts, and then I sent it to the publisher in 2014,” she says. In her book, Coty shares her knowledge about self-motivation and about how we need to accept ourselves in body, mind and soul.

Speaking on a regular basis to clubs and societies in San Diego, Coty has made a difference to people’s lives through her inspirational sayings and poems. Her book is about calming the mind, of self-acceptance and unconditional love. It includes fifty-two inspirational poems which provoke the reader to look at themselves and acknowledge all that they are and all they can be. It is an uplifting book and it’s a lesson of the heart and is about aligning ourselves with our higher good. The intention of this book is to awaken individuals to lead the life they wish and to become more self-aware and master their lives by not living in denial. It also contains eighteen chapters about subjects including resilience, greatness, gratitude, love and eighteen inspirational quotes.

Depressed people seldom laugh, and people who laugh are seldom depressed. It is said that laughter is the best medicine and Coty is a qualified teacher of both Hatha and Laughter yoga, teaching in her local community in San Diego. One thing that Coty wants to emphasise is the great support that she has had from her wonderful husband and family, both back in California and here in Gibraltar.

An excerpt of Poem titled Listen:

Be like waves which crash on the jetty
Washing all our impurities away
Waves like a crescent curtain
Dangling in its fringes
Unearthing sunken precious stones
Hurling them up above the elevation
Hanging on dear life right ahead
Waves that don’t crush us because we wish it

Coty communicates with truth and intensity, and her mission is clear. “My message for humanity is to love, to have compassion for one another and be kind to one another,” she says. Unremitting Solace can be purchased at the Gibraltar Bookshop, 300 Main Street, with all proceeds going to charity.

Her website is: www.unremittingsolace.com

Sanguinetti’s ‘Sleeping Dogs’ On Paperback

Sleeping Dogs Book CoverThe paperback edition of Thomas Mogford’s fourth in a series of Gibraltar-based Spike Sanguinetti thrillers ‘Sleeping Dogs’ has recently been published.

Thomas Mogford is the author of a series of crime novels that follow the life of a lawyer from Gibraltar called Spike Sanguinetti. The first book in the series, Shadow of the Rock, was one of the Spectator‘s ‘Books of the Year’, and was shortlisted for the CWA 2013 Dagger Award for best debut novel. Both the sequel, Sign of the Cross, and follow-up, Hollow Mountain, were shortlisted for Crimefest’s eDunnit award (in 2014 and 2015), while the fourth book, Sleeping Dogs, was chosen as one of the Guardian‘s ‘Best Holiday Reads’ of 2015. The fifth Spike Sanguinetti novel will be published by Bloomsbury in February 2017.

Tom explains: “Like many a man as the years go by, Spike has got himself a new ‘look’. Check him out in the link below as he showcases it for the new paperback of ‘Sleeping Dogs’. Spike Book 5 is due out in February 2017 (his life really gets turns upside down in that one)… And the first three Spike books have recently been optioned for TV. No guarantee they’ll ever get made, but nonetheless, all casting ideas gratefully received.”

 ‘Sleeping Dogs’

An old friend persuades Gibraltarian lawyer Spike Sanguinetti to take a well-earned rest on Corfu’s beautiful north-east coast. But when the bloodied body of a young Albanian is found and a local man accused of his murder, Spike reluctantly agrees to take the case. Beneath the island’s veneer of wealth and privilege Spike uncovers truths so damaging that those involved will go to any lengths to protect them. And when a vulnerable young woman disappears, Spike knows that there are some sleeping dogs he cannot let lie.

“One of the most enjoyable crime series of recent years.” JAKE KERRIDGE, SUNDAY EXPRESS

“Tremendous atmosphere, rich characterisation and ideally complex plotting.” WILLIAM BOYD, author of Any Human Heart, Restless and Sweet Caress

“Terrific. What Aurelio Zen was to Italy, Spike Sanguinetti could turn out to be for Gibraltar.” CHARLES CUMMING, author of The Trinity Six, A Foreign Country and A Colder War

“Evocative, engrossing and entertaining.” THE TIMES

“Recommended for holiday reading.” FRONT ROW, BBC RADIO 4

Spike Sanguinetti is a younger, sexier, unmarried but still sensitive version of Donna Leon’s Guido Brunetti, and his adventures may eventually attract a Leon-size audience.” BOOKLIST

Sleeping Dogs: A Spike Sanguinetti Mystery by Thomas Mogford (ISBN: 9781408846636) is available from Amazon’s Book Store. Free UK delivery on eligible orders.

www.thomasmogford.com

Anna’s Inspiring Write-A-Thon Aims To Raise Money For Skin Cancer Research

Anna with her family Starting on Mother’s Day last March, 35 year old children’s author and mother of three Anna Bogie, has been posting a short poem or ditty a day, on her social media on the subject of Mother’s Mottos, Mantras & Mutterings. She aims to do so for a hundred days in order to raise money for skin cancer research.

Anna originally from Thorpe St Andrew near Norwich but now living in Gibraltar was inspired to raise money for skin cancer research after suffering from melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer. Anna explains, “My generation went on holiday to bake in the sun. The phrase ‘no pain, no gain’ was often used and getting burnt was quite normal – this means a huge number of us put ourselves at risk of getting skin cancer. It’s hugely important to me to raise awareness of sun safety as well as important funds for skin cancer research.”

Anna's Ditty 1Anna has chosen to raise money for the British Skin Foundation by taking on an unusual type of fundraising. “As a busy mum of three young children, it is very difficult to go out for long runs to train for a marathon but I didn’t want that to stop me from raising money for charity.”

Anna’s poems loosely follow the style of Senryu, a form of Japanese poetry with roughly 17 syllables in a 5,7,5 pattern. The aim of this write-a-thon is to make people smile by bringing a bit of light relief to everyone’s day but Anna doesn’t foresee it being an easy task, “sometimes getting through the day can feel like an endurance test and my free time is non-existent!”

Anna's Ditty 3If you’d like to support Anna’s 100 day write-a-thon challenge then please visit https://www.justgiving.com/it7-a-bogie-56d6c0574e379 to make a donation.

You can read the write-a-thon on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/abogieauthor
or on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/a.bogie

About The British Skin Foundation

The British Skin Foundation is the only UK charity dedicated to raising funds for skin disease and skin cancer research. There are eight million people living with a skin disease in the UK, some are manageable and others are severe enough to kill. Skin disease doesn’t just affect the skin. It can have a huge impact on a person’s day-to-day life, crush self-confidence, restrict movement, lead to depression and put a huge strain on families as well as personal relationships.

Their unwavering commitment to funding quality research means they won’t stop until they’ve found cures for common skin problems like eczema and acne through to potential killers like malignant melanoma. This year the British Skin Foundation turns 20 years old, giving out more than £10 million in grants to over 300 research projects since 1996.

For further information please contact: lisa@britishskinfoundation.org.uk

Ruth Parasol… Deeply Connected To Gibraltar

parasolfoundation logoIn the last ten years, she relocated herself from California to Gibraltar, moved the company PartyGaming Plc. she founded from Caribbean to Gibraltar, listed it on LSE for record highs, had three babies, merged the company with BWIN, endured several changes to management and the board, watched her stock in that company tumble few times over, set up her own private investment company, built a dream house, got divorced, navigated the demands of single-parent home while continuing to work and pursue her philanthropic goals through the Parasol Foundation Trust (formerly Bonita Trust) to which she recently added another £10m.

parasol-06Now on extended holiday in Herzilya Israel with a newborn, and a new investment fund, Ruth Parasol seems ready for a new chapter. But Gibraltar Productions reporter, José Luis Martínez, who interviewed her recently, was most keen to hear about what excites her most? Here are some of her surprising answers:


Did getting rich change things?

Yes and no. I grew up in California and wanted for nothing. My parents were successful immigrants who worked hard and gave us nice things, as teenagers we lived in a lovely home in an expensive neighbourhood. Money gives you tutors and extra medicine, a softer mattress, safer cars, but you are more of a target for jealousy and bad people with bad intentions. In the end, the problems and challenges are the same, it is only zeros and different kinds of issues.

Where do you consider home?

I have lived in a lot of places that are near and dear to me. I spent many years in the US prior to moving from California to Gibraltar in 2004 and was there full time until 2010. I have been spending some time in Israel since, which is where my father grew up. I went there after my marriage ended, to recharge and recover, to focus on the children away from work. I want to see more of the world – somewhere in Asia to live and work for a short while may be good at some point, there is so much happening over there. Meanwhile, I remain deeply connected to Gibraltar. It is my home and great a family place and it is where my private office, my foundation and my business operations are. I am building a new family home and new office at John Macintosh Square, the ex Ye Olde Rock building. It should be ready early next year and I am very excited about that.

Why did Bonita Trust change its name to the Parasol Foundation Trust?

I am planning to make additional contributions to the trust and have some more specific ideas about the types of projects I want the trust and me to be associated with, so it just seemed more appropriate to the trust donors and advisors that it carry my name, although I must admit it sounds somewhat too grand from my tongue — but will age into as they say.

What are your favourite philanthropic projects?

I want to do many more graduate-level and research scholarships, especially assisting disadvantaged women, but not exclusively women, in the areas of artificial intelligence and stem cell research. The subject matter fascinates me and I enjoy meeting the students to have dinner together and spend time together as an intellectual group. Teachers are fortunate in that way and so often the students are surprised to be meeting the person behind the curtains. They call themselves Parasol students which I find endearing.

Any new projects in Gibraltar?

Locally, our pet project is the Gibraltar World Music Festival which is a wonderful local event that blends musicians, cultures and religions from around the world and at same intertwines with the beauties of Gibraltar, with performances taking place on Main Street, the Caves and the Waterside. It is a very special kind of event, showcasing artists of all backgrounds and cultures (Muslim, Christian and Jewish), and involving most of Gibraltar’s dance academies. We continue to support the GHA, Gibraltar Philharmonic Society, the Med Steps and few others, but I am especially keen to support and watch this little Gibraltar event grow and grow in a way that is inclusive of mixed cultures and sounds.

What about business, are you active?

I am very active day to day with my private business which is separate and apart from the public company bwin.party, of which I am still one of the largest stakeholders, but have not been active since I left it to professional management after the IPO. Since then, I have been busy focusing on my children and diversifying my savings into real estate and financial funds. All very conservative, bread and butter type of things, nothing exciting in the start-up sense but still challenging and still interesting, keeps the mind thinking.

You are a new mother again?

Oh gosh yes. I know crazy, terrible threes at 50! It sounds worse than it is – Being 50 in a few years, not the terrible threes ahead. It’s a whole story by itself, I feel so lucky to have another baby. I love children. I was too busy before, too busy in business and work, now I have time to appreciate motherhood, to see the world differently than in big glass tower boardrooms. I feel sure it will continue to open my heart philanthropically and my mind creatively. Children are a different kind of marathon.

Is it difficult to juggle it all?

I don’t know, I just get up in the morning and get on with it. And I know that I am very very fortunate. Lucky so far ‘knock on wood.’ My 79 year old dad texted me recently “I just woke up”, followed by “that is the good news”.

Exclusive Interview with Breed 77

Elena Scialtiel interviews Breed 77 – the headline act for this year’s Gibraltar National Day Concert – exclusively for I Insight Gibraltar magazine on-line [Read more…]

Bang Bang Beirut

Bang Bang Beirut.The Gibraltar Amateur Drama Association will be staging their new play as part of the Autumn Festival, “Bang Bank Beirut”, by Ray Cooney and Tony Hilton. Performance days will be Wednesday 30th and Thursday 31st October and Saturday 1st November.

Again GADA is sticking to their tried and tested formula of offering its audience its usual hilarious evening with this play. An outrageously funny farce set in the lobby and courtyard of a small hotel in the Middle East, where a group of British undercover agents (in a variety of unlikely disguises) are trying to weather a local military coup, while devising a plan to smuggle a young native prince out of danger. The bungling spies arouse the suspicions of the local military and we are off on a mad whirl of double-takes, sliding panels, missing bodies and mistaken identities – the perfect ingredients for a fast-moving and hilarious evening’s entertainment.

The play is produced for Gada by Howard Danino and jointly Directed by Howard Danino, Trevor Guilliano and Trevor Norton. The cast is made up of our usual members with some new faces thrown in.

11th Gibraltar Stage Dance Festival

stage dance festival14 year old Louise Flower from Art In Movement took this year’s award for the most promising dancer at the 11th Gibraltar Stage Dance Festival. Out of the 61 soloists that participated at the festival, 7 were selected by international adjudicator, Angela Whittle to perform in the grand final. Bursary finalists included Nicole Victor, Cora Ramirez, Sarah McLaren, Nicole Valverde, Adrian Turner and Olivia Morrice.

The festival, organised by M.O. Productions, was held from Wednesday 3rd to Friday 5th April 2013 at the John Mackintosh Hall Theatre and saw 196 dancers from Gibraltar, England and Spain taking part. [Read more…]

Orange Peel – Bing Bing Review

orange peelAfter a couple of years playing locally and in Spain it seemed 2012 was to be rock trio Orange Peel’s year. Having entered the local Battle of the Band’s competition obtaining 2nd place twice it appears they were third time lucky when last summer they took the 1st prize. This wave of luck appeared to accompany them at further competition in Sotogrande where they also took 1st place.

With the prize money of the local Battle of the Band’s, Orange Peel set upon recording what was to become their debut album ‘Bing Bing’. As it happens it turned out that the recording and mixing process took a little longer than expected and the December release the band hoped for was not to be. Another hurdle was faced by the band as the duplication and pressing of the album was held back but finally the band are pleased to have the finished product in their hands and have sent us a copy of their debut album “Bing Bing”. [Read more…]

Barclays employees “Search for Cupid” for charity

wobbles fundraiserMore than £1,300 was raised by Barclays employees in Gibraltar  last month when they took part in various love-themed activities for children’s charity Wobbles.

The fundraising initiative kicked off on Valentine’s Day when employees paid a £1 donation to ‘dress down’ in red.  Other activities included games, quizzes and an in-house lunch at the Main Street and Regal House branches.

Employees also donated £2 to take part in a “Search for Cupid” treasure hunt around Gibraltar, which ended with a paella dinner served at the Calpe Rowing Club.    [Read more…]

THE DUKE OF EDINBURGH’S AWARD

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis coming weekend, 25th to 27th January,  a group of 48 participants, from the Open Award Centre, Guides and Air Training Corps, who are undertaking the SILVER AWARD, travel to Spain in order to carry out another practice camp for the Adventurous Journey Section of their programmes.

The participants will be travelling to the “PARQUE NATURAL LOS ARCONOCALES” located near Cortes de le Frontera.  The participants will carry out activities such as camp craft, map reading and navigation as well as hiking in the area.  The hikes will give them the opportunity of practising their navigation skills as well as learning the value of teamwork.

The Qualifying Expedition, which takes place in July this year, will require them to hike a minimum of 48 kilometres over 3 days.

The participants, whose ages range from 16 to 17, will be self sufficient during the venture carrying all their equipment and food requirements.  The young people will be supervised by experienced leaders throughout the trip.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The Award would like to thank Bland Limited and Toyota Stockholdings Limited for their continued support with the transportation requirements without which many of the ventures would not be possible.

For further information, on the venture please contact Alexis on 20048651 or, about the Award as a whole, please contact the Director, Michael Pizzarello on 20059818 or email mjpizza@gibtelecom.net

The Award is a challenge, for everyone!  So, get involved you will not regret it!