Peer Advocates program aims to support students

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Peer Advocates program aims to support students

Rachel Araiza

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Pacific University’s Campus Wellness Center is here to help students with almost anything related to their emotional and social wellbeing.

“Campus wellness is about promoting social health and wellbeing, while trying to encourage healthier relationships and reduced stress on campus,” Campus Wellness Coordinator Kathleen Converse said.

A relatively new resource at the Campus Wellness Center is the new Peer Advocates program.

Peer Advocates is a  group of five trained students with whom other students can confidentially talk to about issues they have experienced on or off campus.

The group hopes that by having a resource composed of peers, rather than counselors, more students will feel comfortable reaching out for emotional support.

“I think the Peer Advocacy program will definitely make students feel more comfortable,” junior Kali AnDyke said. “It’s a lot easier to talk to someone who is your own age and a peer rather than a counselor.”

Those wishing to talk to an advocate can go on online to the Support at Pacific page and fill out the Request Advocacy form.

Other resources concerning sexual misconduct, harassment, personal safety and bias can also be found on this page.

In addition to the new Peer Advocacy program, Campus Wellness will be  improving many of their other events as well. One of Campus Wellness’ traditional events is Sex and Pizza. Sex and Pizza presentations focus on starting group discussions about what does and does not qualify as consent, while encouraging healthy relationships and bystander intervention.

Campus Wellness workshop booths can be found on Thursdays in the University Center from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The booth changes themes weekly, but focuses on promoting campus health and wellbeing.

Monthly Stress Relief Drop-In Nights is another resource offered to students. With various activities, such as coloring, facemasks and meditation, these events provide an outlet for decompression.

Drop-In Nights will be held on the last Thursday of each month, with promotions happening closer to the activity dates.

Puppies on the Patio, one of Campus Wellness’ most popular events, will also continue this year. During this event, students stressed over finals can relax by petting and playing with puppies.

While last year saw success and interest in offered activities, Campus Wellness hopes to continue to grow in both membership and student involvement.

Those interested in becoming involved in the group can stop by the Campus Wellness Office in Clark Hall to receive information on all upcoming events. Meetings are held on Tuesdays from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and Thursdays from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

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