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UM’s Student Wellness Centre (SWC)—a space to get connected, be well and stay well.

Find a restorative oasis on campus: Five things you can do at the Student Wellness Centre

February 12, 2024 — 

On the Fort Garry Campus, a short trip from UMSU University Centre down the Curry Place Pedway to 162 Extended Education, UM’s Student Wellness Centre (SWC) is waiting for you—a space to get connected, be well and stay well. If you enter Extended Education through the tunnels, head straight down the hall, past the route to the Active Living Centre and turn right just before the doors to the bus stop outside. If you are coming from the Active Living Centre, turn left once you’re in Extended Education and follow the signs, turning right just before the doors back out to University Crescent.

Upon walking into the space, take a deep breath and have a look around. You will see a variety of cozy and calm spaces to explore. If you aren’t sure how to occupy the space, don’t worry. There is no right way. This space is designed to meet you where you are at, with what you need, that day. A staff person or volunteer sits at our front desk ready to help you, should you need any support.

Here are five things you can do while you’re here:

1. Meet with a Healthy U peer health educator to discuss health and wellness concerns.

To meet with a Healthy U volunteer, you can walk in during office hours or make an appointment on our website. Our volunteer will provide you with a screening form to ensure Healthy U is right for you. From there, you will be asked to complete a brief intake form, outlining your presenting concern and what you are hoping to get from the session. Our volunteers can meet with students for up to 45 minutes. They can provide a listening ear, a supportive and non-judgemental environment, coping tips and strategies, and direction to resources should that be helpful.

Some reasons students have seen a Healthy U volunteer:

· challenges with a relationship breakup (friend, romantic partner(s))

· stress or overwhelm about balancing the student life

· questions about health and wellness resources on campus

· tips for a better sleep

2. Rest, relax, and recharge in the lounge space.

We invite you to sit on the couch, use our rocking chair or regulate with our wheeled stool. You will often hear calming music playing within the centre, but we also have noise cancelling headphones should you wish to disconnect or connect to something specific to your mood. The SWC offers dim lighting, primarily illuminated by fairy lights, salt lamps, and SAD lamps. We have blankets and pillows available for those who are looking for a little extra comfort.

3. Explore and learn something new from resources in the wellness library, curated to meet the diverse needs of our student population.

Find out about Student Support units on campus, discover health and wellness supports available through the Active Living Centre or Family Resource Centre or pick up safer sex supplies and educational material. Read self-development and wellness books while you’re within the space and learn more about safer substance use materials including information from the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba.

4. Connect with others and build community with other students who share similar interests.

Connection can be challenging on such a large campus. At the Student Wellness Centre, we strive to cultivate a culture of acceptance and belonging. You are invited to use the SWC to meet like-minded students with an interest in various health and wellness facets. You can connect informally through sitting together and having a cup of tea or through our ongoing programming like “Unwind and Thrive – Making Stress Balls” “Student Group Mix and Mingles and Q+As” or “Pause for Paws – Pet Therapy”.

5. Use our calm space to find time to regulate on your own, in a safe environment – whatever way that looks like for you.

If this private “room” is unoccupied, you can simply set up on our rocking chair, leave the sliding door open or closed and begin to regulate into your own space. We offer a weighted blanket, dim lighting, and noise cancelling headphones for you to make the space what you need.

Come and find a restorative oasis on campus! Hours change based on staffing, so check out UM’s Health and Wellness page for more information and the latest updates. Connect with us on the Healthy U website, on Instagram or via email.


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