Peer Support Centre Cares Week

Booths and night events hope to inspire self-care

PSC at the ARC.
Supplied by PSC

From Mar. 5 to 9, the Queen’s Peer Support Centre (PSC) took to campus to remind students about an integral component of academic success: self-care. 

“PSC Care’s Week is all about self-love and self-care and we just promote that through booths in the ARC and nightly events,” PSC Outreach Coordinator Carolina Navas, ArtSci ’19, told The Journal. “It’s just getting people to talk about what self-care is and how to implement that through stressful times — like exams and midterms. “ 

The week incorporated PSC booths at the ARC as well as two night events that allowed students to meet others while taking part in relaxing activities.  

“PSC Cares Week is just getting the word out there about what self-care is. It’s journaling and doing yoga, but also doing your laundry or catching up on readings,” Navas added. “We even had people say ‘Stages’ because if that’s your self-care then that’s okay.”

Outreach Coordinator Mia Berloni, ArtSci ’19, added the purpose of the week wasn’t to promote the PSC itself. Rather, it was focused on their mandate to contribute to the continuous development of a supportive, accepting and inclusive campus community. 

On Monday, a booth in the ARC invited students to write what they loved about themselves on a large whiteboard. The following day, the PSC sold t-shirts and hats with messages such as, “You’re not alone’”and “Perfectly imperfect”. 

On Tuesday night, they hosted a Paint Night at the Tea Room for all students to take part in. During the day on Wednesday and Thursday, the PSC incorporated more interactive message boards with “Draw your self-care” and “How do you self-care” campaigns. 

At night on Thursday, The Brew hosted an event called ‘Snakes and Lattes’ that allowed students to enjoy baked goods and tea with board games. 

The week’s events closed on Friday, with the PSC employing its craftiest idea:  the ‘Jars of Joy’ campaign. Participating students filled small mason jars with small items, candies and heartfelt messages to themselves or their friends as a reminder to make time for self-care. 

“I think we gave the students permission to take care of themselves,” PSC Head Manager Megan Kingvisser told The Journal. “When midterms were on their way, it’s hard to justify self-care and this week gave students the opportunity to hang out with their friends, meet new people and gave them the permission and validation to take care of themselves even if you have a million things to think about and do.” 

For Kingvisser, the role of the PSC remains integral to the student experience outside of just PSC Cares Week. 

“I think that students are recognizing the importance of reaching out and asking for help and the PSC is a nice first step for a lot of students because you are talking to a peer,” she reflected. “The PSC grows in reflection of the student body’s need for it and this year the PSC has doubled in size.”

Kingvisser emphasized accessing resources on campus is a positive step towards enabling self-care.

“Students need and rely on the service, and the entire time I feel just lucky enough to be able to be a part of that growth. The PSC is here for students, and that’s not going to change. I think that students are starting to see that and recognize that it’s okay to ask for help and talk about it,” she said. 

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