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Women’s Wellness Day brings health and balance to Nova Scotia high school students

by Jennifer Richards | April 22, 2005

On Friday, May 13, Women’s Wellness Day will be held in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, for the first time. Three high schools – Park View Education Centre, Forest Heights Community School and North Queens Rural High School – are joining efforts to present a fun-filled, educational day for young women students to focus on themselves.

The Women’s Wellness Conference will take place at the Nova Scotia Community College Lunenburg Campus.

Organizers strongly believe that this day outside of the classroom will be at least as educational as one spent in class. It is not often that young women have the chance to learn so much on such a variety of topics in a day.

The event was inspired when New Germany High School held its own Wellness Day. Parkview Education Centre, Forest Heights Community School and North Queens Rural High School unanimously agreed that female wellness was an aspect of student's lives that had been sitting on the back burner for far too long.

An energetic Women’s Wellness Committee, comprised of students, staff and community advisers, created this Wellness Conference. Work has been ongoing for the past year to make this event a reality.

The day will begin at 9:30 with a 20-minute drama presentation, as well as an overview of the day. This is followed by workshops facilitated exclusively by women teachers and community volunteers. Each student will have her choice of three 45- to 60-minute sessions, which she will attend during the day.

The results of a survey of potential topics were used to guide the selection of workshops. Some of the 49 sessions (many of which are repeated) include:

  • nutrition
  • relationships
  • time and stress management
  • suicide
  • acupuncture
  • dance
  • homophobia
  • Tai Chi
  • bullying
  • self-esteem

The YMCA attached to the Nova Scotia Community College will conduct fitness sessions and tours of the new facility. There will also be numerous information booths relating to wellness on display from 9:30 in the morning till 3:30 the same afternoon.

It is the Wellness Committee’s hope that this day – created for female students – will educate young women on their personal wellness, and also give them the opportunity to learn about areas of wellness that are foreign or unfamiliar to them. Six doctors, two nurse practitioners, and nurses will volunteer at the Well Women's Clinic. This gender-specific health clinic will allow students the opportunity to have breast examinations, learn how to perform breast self-examinations, or have Pap smears done confidentially by health professionals.

It is never too early to learn the benefits of preventative screening.

The Women’s Wellness Day will offer students the ability to select workshops that are relevant to them or that they find particularly interesting. With such a varying spectrum of sessions to choose from, the Wellness Committee feels confident that each student will be able to enroll in three workshops, which she will find informational in concern to her wellness.

The Wellness Committee has great aspirations for their first Women’s Wellness Conference and hope that the young women recognize the benefits of such an undertaking. It is also the Committee’s intention that this will become an annual conference.

This day will provide young women the opportunity to ask questions, participate and learn about themselves in a way that has likely not been offered to them previously. It will educate high school women on wellness issues and encourage them to live a healthy lifestyle for today, for tomorrow, forever.

If you would like to contribute to this worthwhile venture, please e-mail us at aebent@staff.ednet.ns.ca.

Contributions could include: donations of money, gift certificates, products for individual goodie bags, door prizes or raffle prizes, as well as donations for our nutritional breaks.

Jennifer Richards is a grade 12 French immersion student at Park View Education Centre (PVEC), Nova Scotia. She enjoys creative writing and has been able to include this hobby within her active role in PVEC Women’s Wellness Committee.

The Wellness Conference will open with a drama presentation she has written monologues for and is directing. Jennifer has also written various promotional articles for the committees, which have been published on websites and in local journals.

Jennifer writes for the school’s literary journal, Shorelines, its newspaper, The East Wing, and with the school’s writer’s group. She is a member of the Park View Drama Society, Safe Grad Committee, Graduation Committee and Prom Committee.

Jennifer plans to maintain an active schedule when she attends university this fall, where she will pursue a Bachelor of Arts.

This feature was first published on section15.ca’s predecessor site CoolWomen.

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