Read about how one of our teaching assistants found love in our Valentine’s day blog special.
Effie 1

I became a Smartie in June 2011 working in London as a teaching assistant and nursery nurse. I choose to join Smart Teachers after leaving my job to pursue my dream of starting my own business as a multicultural storyteller and poet. It all worked out really well and I am able to work for Smart during the quieter periods of business.

Two months after joining Smart I met my lovely hunky chunky John. We actually attended the same church in Walthamstow, east London for over ten years. It’s a bubbly, busy, large and lively Pentecostal church, so it’s not surprising that our paths had hardly crossed.

During the summer of 2011 I was preparing to sing at a friends wedding; I had written a song and I needed help with the music. A friend suggested John may be able to help as he plays guitar. At that time I also happened to have a bleeping smoke alarm that was seriously annoying me – and as well as playing guitar John is a fire fighter! Once again I was directed to John for help. He very kindly agreed to look at my alarm (which ended up simply needing a new battery) and after enjoying a scrumptious meal as a thank you, he also agreed to help me with the song.

To cut a long love-story short; the song we worked on together was called ‘Love is Declared’ and by the end of the summer holidays, well, love WAS declared. We spent about three weeks solid on the song; practising, recording, chatting and walking in the park. One of my fondest memories is sitting on a bench in the park singing the song while John played along with his acoustic guitar ❤❤!

We started ‘courting’ that December and got engaged on his birthday on August 10th. The following year, he got down on one knee by a fountain in Hyde Park.

On January 20th 2013 we had the most beautiful white winter Walthamstow wedding! I couldn’t have asked for a more romantic wedding day – it was truly magical. We’ve have been back from our honeymoon in the Canary Islands for almost two weeks now and we still have our head in the clouds and are all loved up.

Happy Valentine’s Day to all our Smarties and anyone reading this.

Effie final

Effua Gleed
Teaching assistant and nursery nurse at Smart Teachers 2011 – present

All photos by Tim Hoy of TPS Photos To see more photos click: