The opening of ‘Jojo’s’ bar in Oldham, Greater Manchester on 14 May, was ‘a truly remarkable and heart–felt evening’ according to attendees.
Situated in the heart of Oldham, the intimate and relaxed bar was opened to stand in loving memory of 25-year old Joetta Shumba, who tragically lost her life in a fatal car accident earlier this year.
“Over 100 people came through the doors to show support for the warm and vivacious young woman Joetta, who had touched the hearts of so many people”, Keshia Coleman – one of the organisers said.
Jojo’s kick-started its residency with a fundraiser for Joetta’s 5 year old son. “Walking into this highly-spirited venue it is clear to see the amount of thought and effort that has been incorporated into the event. Despite the undertones of laughter and music that floats throughout the bar, there are gentle reminders of Joetta Shumba throughout – a reminder of the legacy that will continue to live on”, Coleman stated.
Set up in aid of raising money for Joetta’s son, the event was a symbolic tribute for Joetta. “It is also about remembering her in her best form, how warm-hearted she was and so vibrant”.
Along with a favourite picture of Joetta hanging over the bar, Jojo’s also houses a memory tree – where guests, family members and friends can leave their personal messages.
Soulful tones could be heard from singer Monet, who performed a tribute in a rendition of one of Joetta’s favourite songs – ‘Adorn’ by Miguel. Other special performances at the event included pianist ‘Dario’, ‘Aim Sky High’ company and dancers ‘Miruna’ and ‘Amelia’. The performances were followed by an auction of a signed Manchester United Football T-shirt.
When asked to summarise the significance of the event, Joetta’s best friends commented, “This event allowed us to find some source of peace; to not morn but treasure and embrace Jo [Joetta] in all her greatness”.