On Thursday, January 19, UTM’s Health & Counselling Centre and the Department of Physical Education and Athletics and Recreation held UTM’s third annual Health and Wellness Fair at the RAWC.
“Students are not aware of what is offered to them in the community, and the Health and Wellness Fair is a great way to connect with the community organizations,” said Rachel Tennant, the program coordinator.
There were complimentary items offered at each booth, including free massages, free food, and free tooth-whitening from Dental Hygiene Solutions.
“Chartwells showcases healthy alternatives for everyone at the university. We attend this fair every year, and as a result of the exposure more and more people get involved,” said Agata Damiecka, the marketing manager.
UTM entitites present at the fair included the Career Centre, official dietitian Kimberly Green, and the UTM Athletic Council. Also present were Student Housing and Residence Life, Green Dot, the Sports Clinic, the Women’s Centre, Erindale College Special Response Team, OUT@UTM, SEC, the Blood and Stem Cell Society, and Peer Health Educators.
Many of the organizations at the fair had volunteer opportunities available. One such organization, the AccessAbility Resource Centre, aims to provide services to ensure that students with disabilities can freely and actively participate in university life. Raeesa Jiwa described AccessAbility as the biggest volunteer organization on campus, with more than 400 participants.
The fair’s attendance increased over last year’s, with more than 600 students present. Organizers hope that the fair’s popularity will continue to exceed expectations, because it is a chance for students to gain support for their health and well-being.
“We received overwhelmingly positive feedback from students who were glad to have the opportunity to learn about a variety of health topics and to discover or reconnect with the campus and community organizations available to support them,” said Chad Jankowski, the health education coordinator at the Health & Counselling Centre. “The feedback from the exhibitors has also been really positive; they said that our students were really engaged, friendly, and excited to learn about ways to improve their well-being.”
The UTM Health and Wellness Fair is part of UTMAC’s Health Week, intended to encourage students to live a healthier lifestyle. Health Week started off with recipes fit for a student’s budget yet attainable at OPH, a hands-on skill clinic, and a rowing competition.