Mental health is a concern for many people, and students often report particular difficulties with their well-being.
That’s the motivation behind a series of seminars, activities and events being held this week in what York University is calling Well-being Week. York University’s website states that the school “prioritizes all interdependent components of wellness – such as physical, emotional and mental health.”
The series runs from Jan. 16 to Feb. 1, both over Zoom and in-person at the Keele campus. There are still many events to choose from, with seminars about improving sleep and promoting mental health, resources on meal planning and health effects of vaping, classes in yoga and cooking, and more.
“I am most excited to attend the webinar being hosted by FGS [Faculty of Graduate Studies] about coping with stress,” says Tina Ranta, assistant director of well-being at York’s Student Counselling, Health & Well-being. “That is open to all community members so that we can learn from one another and build connection.”
Ranta is also “excited to see so many skills building-related events,” which are offered by peer health educators, as well as cooking classes hosted by Food Services.
Well-being Week is hosted by various organizations at York, and follows a long history of well-being and mental health resources at the university. “Well-being Week is one of the many ways York University demonstrates our commitment to fostering a culture of well-being across our campuses,” said Mary Catherine Masciangelo, York’s assistant vice president of human resources, in a press release.
Ranta similarly explained that “this campaign and events feed directly into the work being led at York in creating a Well-being Strategy that aims to support all community members to be well in this shared environment, as wellness is a necessary precondition to learning and working.”
Masciangelo has also outlined some ideas for destigmatizing mental health, such as education through organizations like the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health; engaging empathetically when talking about people’s mental health; awareness of attitudes and behaviours that may affect others’ well-being; and simple respect and care for people in your immediate circle and wider community.
For more information on Well-being Week, including the full schedule of events, click here.
If you need support as a York student, keep.meSAFE is a free service that offers online resources and phone lines to connect to mental health professionals, 24/7. Visit https://www.keepmesafe.org/.