CARISSA CARICATO | FOUNDEr/CHIEF EXECUTIVE HOOLA-GAN
After my first life-changing, heart-awakening trip to Haiti in January 2009, I started taking hoop dance classes with the Hoola Monsters. When I took a bunch of travel hoops back to Haiti for Christmas in 2009, they were a magical way to interact with the kids (and adults) everywhere! I fell in love, with hooping, Haiti, the contagious joy of the children, but more importantly, with Jesus and His love for the whole world.
After the devastating earthquake in Haiti, God began to shake and move my world around. After two more trips to Haiti and lots of divine stories, I started Hoola for Happiness in July 2010 to spread the joy of hooping and the love of God all over the world through hooping projects and partnerships. I quit my nonprofit marketing job at the Crisis Center of Tampa Bay to pursue Jesus’ call on my life to focus on Hoola for Happiness full time.
Our team of Joy Spreaders have been to 81 countries since 2010, and as God opens doors, we are hooping right through them. Following God is the craziest adventure you could ask for, and it is so worth it for the JOY He brings!
My Hoop Places: Haiti, Brazil, England (London), Kenya, Uganda, India, Dubai, United States/Hawaii, Panama, Guatemala, Honduras, Ukraine, Costa Rica, Czech Republic (Prague), Poland, Israel, Turkey, Lebanon, Netherlands
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of POWER and of LOVE and of a SOUND MIND. -2 Timothy 1:7
LAURA UCHOA | JOY SPREADER, BAMBOLE PARA ALEGRIA (BRAZIL)
Laura is a leader of the Bambolê Para Alegria project (Hoola for Happiness Brazil), based in Rio de Janeiro. She is passionate about dancing for Jesus, teaching dance as worship, discipleship and loving on kids who come from difficult backgrounds. Laura also participates on the leadership team for REGAR, a unified worship dance leadership council for all of Brazil. They actively participate in street outreach, social projects of dance, and gospel training through the arts.
Laura has trained Joy Spreaders all over Brazil through this partnership for street outreach & kids social dance projects, as well as hosted a Hoola for Happiness world leadership gathering in 2016 for the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, while dancing in the streets to glorify our great God!
Jana hrdinova | JOY SPREADER, Hoola For happiness Czech republic
Jana is the leader of Hoola for Happiness Europe, based in Prague, Czech Republic. As a Hoopreneur of her own business Nany Hoops, Jana unleashes her bold creativity by making gorgeous hoops and teaching dance classes and workshops in her city, mostly to women who are looking for new ways to express themselves. Her true love for inspired art and deep faith lead her to create beautiful things and look for the beautiful in all people.
Jana has led the Hoola for Happiness project from Prague since 2015. She interned with our Hoola Tampa team for 5 weeks and has partnered with Hoola for projects in Poland, Brazil, Turkey, India and several cities in Czech Republic. The hoops she has made and donated have been sent to over 8 countries, including Rwanda!
RENELLE SNELLEKSZ | JOY SPREADER, Hoola for Happiness india
Meet Renelle- an amazing, hilarious, joyful, dancing, hooping, Jesus-loving, world-changing beauty who coordinates Hoola for Happiness India’s efforts in Pune/Mumbai! Renelle has worked alongside our H4H India team during the administration of hoop projects in her area, and she brings her own skills in therapeutic dance along with her. Not only that, she has also beautifully incorporated hoops in her existing social projects.
A former TV entertainment news anchor, Renelle resigned from her last assignment after working for six years at the leading TV network Times Now to pursue her passion for dance and social change. Now, through bringing dance/ dance movement therapy into places like the slums, women’s prisons, children’s cancer centers, aftercare homes for girls/ young women rescued from sex trafficking, and more, Renelle is living out her passions.
Renelle is now an independent dance movement therapy practitioner, and she loves using therapeutic dance as a tool for non-verbal communication and a vehicle for healing, recovery, restoration and transformation. Renelle’s Dance Movement Therapy initiative is called AL!VE – Rise to Dance Again. She partners with reputed organizations like International Justice Mission, the Indian Cancer Society and Save the Children (India) among others. She has been trained and represents Kolkata Sanved, pioneers of Dance Movement Therapy (DMT) in India. In addition to this, Renelle also handles the creative production for an art therapy and vocational training project for women under trials in prison in Mumbai called AL!VE.