Autumn has approached us, seemingly abruptly, with the sudden shortening of days, and the virtually daily rain to remind us. Since we gained an extra hour turning our clocks back this past weekend, I thought I’d use this “extra time” to quickly bring us up to speed with the progress we’ve made this term.
We’ve made the most progress in terms of our support group attendance this term, compared to the last two years. It’s been nice having not only facilitators at the groups, and actually supporting other peers who are seeking help. Our attendance has increased significantly, with the highest number of attendance being 5 people, and the average being 3 people.
Promotion and Outreach
Most of our attendees heard about us from Kaleidoscope, so we are eager to continue our efforts of promotion with them. In addition to that, one attendee heard about us from Twitter, which means our social media efforts have made some impression! We were not able to host a Thrive event this year due to the amount of things we had on our plates, but we definitely plan on being at the UBC Mental Health Symposium coming up in 2017.We are also very grateful for Pride UBC for adding our support group to their weekly newsletter. Hopefully in the new year, while we keep on with our current promotional outlets, we can explore more to further expand our reach.
In terms of our education component, we’ve been working on two things. One of them is having an educational piece to our support groups. So the way we’ve been doing this is after check-ins, we would use the remainder of the time to discuss something related to self-harm or self-care. We’ve done a brainstorming on self-care/coping strategies, and brief discussion around harm-reduction. The other thing is an educational workshop that Natasha has developed on self-harm and self-care. It touches on defining self-harm (what it is, who does it), how to approach the topic of self-harm, self-care strategies, harm reduction and empathy.
With all the small but important steps that we’ve made, we’re excited for the rest of the term, and look forward for the year to come. Stay tuned for more!