2021 08 Wellness Walk

HYI Volunteer Contributors: Tanvi Manku, Naomi Ogunjobi, Farwa Rehan, Kaia Seet, Gurveen Uppal, and Alice Zhou

Context: On Tuesday, August 3, six HYI volunteers joined HYI Coordinator Lily at Coronation Park on Lakeshore Ave for a Wellness Walk event. We are Tanvi, Naomi, Farwa, Kaia, Gurveen, and Alice - and we are from different areas of Halton Region and participate on different teams of the Halton Youth initiative! 

The Wellness Walk began with warm welcomes and introductions at the flag poles near the park entrance. We then headed to a shady area and set up blankets to ground our activity with positive intentions. Everyone took turns reading excerpts from the Thanksgiving Address, a Haudenosaunee invocation known as the “Words Before All Else: Greetings to the Natural World.” This translation of the Mohawk version of the Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address was drawn from the 1993 version that was developed by the Six Nations Indian Museum and the Tracking Project. link: Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address – 1 | Dance For All People. Creating space for gratitude and connection helped us come together. 

Our group walked along the shores of Lake Ontario, reflected on wellness, did some stretching and continued to connect. We plan to have more of these events as our Region heads into Stage 3 and 4.

The Importance of Wellness

  • Physical and emotional well-being: allows us to interact with others and encourages growth. Allows us to thrive in different environments and spaces. 

  • Creates the feeling of connection, helps avoid reaching the breaking points, and overall happiness and mental stability make sure you don’t feel alone.

  • It promotes reaching/fulfilling your full potential, improves your mood, and aids in improving your overall quality of life
     

Connecting to HYI Goal 1: What local resources do you know that support wellness and mental health?

 

Connecting to HYI Goal 2: what do youth want more people to know about wellness?

  • The need for Mental health awareness in school (stress, time management, workload, and supporting students)

  • COVID impact on mental health (isolation, socializing

  • Mental Health days are necessary

  • Having other generations know that the stats for Gen Z mental health are not higher, we just don’t deny that we need help

  • Mental illness can be presented in many ways, such as high-functioning 
     

Connecting to HYI Goal 3: How can youth volunteer teams (and other community groups) bring wellness into their virtual and in-person programming to create positive youth spaces?

  • More in-person wellness events

  • Have personal/chill conversations with teammates vs. business-like 24/7

  • Positive spaces where everyone can share and feel welcomed

  • Icebreakers and questions of the day to know your team better

  • Encourage youth to interact with each other

  • Being empathetic towards other volunteers