Inspired by Annette’s post about the MoveU Crew, I’d like to share some of the fabulous features of the HealthyU Crew that I’ve been fortunate to be a part of in a communications role. I love being able to share our successes and achievements around campus— especially because an awesome team of students and volunteers are responsible for planning and executing the campaigns and events! Perhaps you’ve seen them at Clubs Day, Street Festival, in libraries and common spaces, and at walkabouts around campus… Here’s a snapshot of each of the four themed-teams that make up the Crew!
FuelU: “FuelU encourages you to maintain a nutritious and balanced diet throughout your time at U of T and beyond. We’ll help you create healthy habits by giving advice on reading food labels, eating well on a budget, mindful eating, safe food handling, healthy resources on and off campus, and more!”
One of the team’s volunteers, Lauren, says that she’s “particularly excited about FuelU’s latest campaign, which is called #HowDoUFuel. Twice a week, we set up a booth in Gerstein Library or the Bahen Centre, and we ask students about their favourite healthy breakfast items.”
The crew brought to campus this year (the best) hummus (ever), “Tasty Tuesdays”, and the FuelU “Healthy Breakfast” Campaign!
HappyU: “HappyU helps you learn more about mental health and resilience, while breaking down stigmas related to mental illness. We provide you with training on how to recognize and respond to mental health issues as you learn how to navigate campus and community wellness resources and find the support that’s right for you.”
Team lead, Sam Kikonis, is most proud of the team’s contribution to ‘Bell Let’s Talk Day’. “We met so many students and had some wonderful conversations about mental health, wellness, and eliminating stigma and barriers on campus. Every event we run is special to me, but this was particularly important – it’s difficult to engage students across such a diverse and large campus, but every time we make one person think or hear new and exciting ideas, my day is made.”
The HappyU Crew took to the campus this year during “Mental Wellness Month”, “Art Attack” and “Cookies and Crafts”!
MoveU: “MoveU inspires you to take a break from your books and get active in all kinds of fun (and free!) ways on campus. Improve how you perform in the classroom, meet new people, lower stress levels, enhance your sleep, boost concentration and get the most out of U of T life on all three campuses!
MoveU Team Lead Alexis, said that her favourite part of being on the team this year has been “watching my volunteers grow as leaders and pull off some really awesome events!”
MoveU stayed active on campus this year with “Get Balanced Yoga”, #HowDoUMove campaign, and monthly Skating Events!
SafeU: “SafeU is all about personal and community safety. We work with our campus partners to raise awareness about consent for sexual activity, healthy relationship skills, how to support your friends, being an active bystander while staying safe, campus resources and more.”
SafeU volunteer, Natasha, was most proud of the teams’ tabling events; “we were approached by a lot of students who spoke to us about their own experiences with gender-based violence, or by students who were previously unaware of how prevalent gender-based violence is among young people in this country. It was humbling to witness first-hand how our events and programs were contributing to a changing campus environment- one that feels safer for everyone.”
The SafeU Crew shared the love at “16 Days of Activism to End Gender Violence”, “Healthy Relationships Bingo” workshops, and “Sex week with SEC”!
The HealthyU Crew team also has various supporting roles beyond the four themed teams.
Alisha, our Crew Coordinator, “loves the opportunity to collaborate on an ongoing basis with such an enthusiastic and hard working group of students. I was the most proud of the Design4Change event because it was a unique opportunity to get students from many disciplines and all three campuses to come together and think about what makes a healthy campus”.
Areeba, one of our Program Assistants, loves her position because it “allows me to assist in the development of my team’s vision for a healthier campus. Through the evaluations, I am able to see the team’s growth and impact on UofT students.”
James, Areeba’s partner Program Assistant, enjoys his role because he is “able to connect and make friends with the peer educators from the four HealthyU subgroups. I was also able to help out with their events and talk to the participants who take part about what they liked about our events.”
For me, I know that my health is not a stagnant process, and it’s been awesome to be able to document my pursuit of a healthier life on campus. I think my chair is more stable now than it has ever been since I arrived at UofT (don’t get the reference? See my first post!)
Best part yet? We’re not even done! There are events to look forward to for the remainder of the year:
“TimeOut! with HealthyU” on Thursday, March 17, 2016 12-3pm.
“Arts & Science Exam Jam” (which I wrote about last semester too!) on Monday, April 11, 2016, 11-3pm.
Does all of this make you think, yes, yes, yes? One volunteer said it best: “The best part about HealthyU is that each role is so multifaceted, so each member will have ample opportunity to bring their own unique talents to the table!” We’re looking to assemble an equally awesome team for next year and if you think you’d be interested, click here for links to this year’s applications!
Have an awesome week!