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Sunday, September 25, 2022

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San Diego State University's Community of Care program aims to address the mental health impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on the campus community. San Diego State University's Community of Care program aims to address the mental health impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on the campus community.
 


Community of Care Program Adds In-Person Workshops to Address Pandemic Impact at SDSU

The expanded initiative aims to address the mental health impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on the entire campus community.
By Courtney Coleman
 

As part of San Diego State University’s continued commitment to the whole health of the campus community, the university this semester expanded offerings in its Community of Care initiative.

First launched in fall 2020, Community of Care aims to address the mental health impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on the campus community.

In this next phase, the university has organized a series of Community Circle sessions for faculty and staff. The four interactive in-person workshops, held throughout the spring 2022 semester, center around topics that range from community building and collaboration to managing COVID-19 related stress and anxiety. 

“Collective Healing can happen in spaces where we gather,” said Cristina Antonucci, a Counseling & Psychological Services (C&PS) psychologist. “It's been a very stressful two years, and while that has looked different for everyone, there's a shared humanity in the struggle. Creating spaces to come together offers an opportunity for support, generating ideas, and creating new connections.”
 
The expanded programming also builds on the success of the university’s Supporting Student Whole Health workshops. More than 500 faculty and staff members have participated in the workshops, which were launched in December 2020 and focus on proactively identifying basic needs and mental health distress in students before there is a crisis. Additional Whole Health workshops are planned for the spring 2022 semester.

Following the rubric of collective healing through bringing the campus community together, the holistic initiative is the result of a collaboration by C&PS, the Center for Inclusive Excellence, and the Office for Restorative Practices. 

“[Our office] is all about the relationships and building that community,”  said Adam Adams, community liaison manager with the Office for Restorative Practices. “When we are talking about finding and building community, we're really going back to the basics of who we are as humans.”

As the semester continues, additional Community of Care programming and events, including opportunities to interact with one of the university therapy dogs, Luna and Baxter, will be shared. 

The university has also launched a dedicated Community of Care webpage with information for students, faculty and staff on upcoming programming and how to participate. 


UPCOMING EVENTS

Mondays and Fridays (Ongoing), SMART Recovery Meetings - Students who are in or seeking recovery, struggling with any addictive or compulsive behavior, as well as those who want to learn more about addiction or recovery, can attend these meetings. General meetings are held Mondays, 6 to 7:30 p.m. in-person in the Calpulli Conference room number 2 or via Zoom. Family and Friends meetings are held Fridays, 3:30 to 5 p.m. in-person in the Calpulli Conference room number 2 or via Zoom.
 
March 8, Women's Recovery Roundtable - Stop by, grab food, and do some crafts as we listen to our first virtual gathering of women speaking about recovery. The hybrid event will be held at the Women’s resource Center from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and  is open to all members of the SDSU community. Register in advance online.

March 9, Faculty and Staff Community Circle - This facilitator-led workshop, titled “It’s More Than Stress,” brings together faculty and staff to discuss facing new challenges that can be stressful and, oftentimes, overwhelming. Learn to cope with stress in a healthy and share productive conversation amongst peers. This event will be held in-person in PSFA 136 and virtually from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. Register in advance online.

March 11, Recovery Science Colloquium - Gather to learn about recovery from an intersectional, anti-oppressive, and trauma-informed lens. Hear from prominent recovery researchers in the field, as well as SDSU student researchers! This event is open to all SDSU community members and will be held from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. at Templo Mayor in the Aztec Student Union. FREE Chipotle catered lunch will be provided for all persons who register in advance online. Register by March 1st to reserve a spot.

March 15, Recovery Yoga - Join Aztecs for Recovery for a virtually led yoga session by Bethe Reed. Reed is a certified yoga instructor, soon-to-be counselor, and person in recovery. Gather in Calpulli Conference Room 1 & 2 (or feel free to watch the stream from your own space) from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m.. This session will focus on Craving & Abundance. and the April 12th session will focus on Intention Setting. No registration is required.

March 23, Student Community Circle - This facilitator-led workshop, titled “It’s More Than Stress,” brings together students to discuss facing new challenges that can be stressful and, oftentimes, overwhelming. Learn to cope with stress in a healthy and share productive conversation amongst peers. This event will be held in-person in PSFA 136 and virtually from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.. Register in advance online.