Good mental health is more than just a psychological issue; this is part of the message that Wm. E. Hay Principal Norbert Baharally wanted to get across by hosting the school’s first Health and Wellness Showcase on Thursday afternoon, May 4.
“There’s a high correlation with being healthy and well and your own mental health,” Baharally said.
The event was intentionally planned to coincide with National Mental Health Week, May 1 to 7, as a way to highlight the connections between mental health and other areas of overall wellness, Baharally said.
With a variety of activities offered, including a spin class, self-care sessions, lacrosse, pickleball, and salad and smoothie making, the goal of the event was to promote overall healthy living throughout all aspects of the lives of students and staff members.
“We were hoping that by trying to model and provide health and wellness activities to our students and staff that as individuals and collectively as a school we will be able to work together in feeling healthier both physically and mentally,” Baharally commented.
While the emphasis of the event was on wellness, those involved also emphasized the need to enjoy an active and healthy lifestyle.
One of the smoothies offered, for example, was a pumpkin pie smoothie – a healthy take on a normally indulgent dessert.
The idea for a wellness event came from a conference that Baharally attended with other Clearview Public Schools colleagues in January 2017.
“In one of our conversations with other schools and school divisions, I heard about a school in Northern Alberta that was organizing a Health and Wellness event. We quickly realized that this was something that we wanted to try but on a smaller scale than the one that we heard about,” he explained.
The event is one that Baharally is hoping to continue in years to come.
“We thought that we would start small with the hopes of making it a bigger event in the future,” he commented.