Western students now have a central, safe, supportive environment to access even more health and wellness resources thanks to a donation of $1 million from the Fairmount Foundation.
Western University’s Wellness Education Centre (WEC), which opened earlier this year in the lower level of the University Community Centre, provides support for students – or anyone – seeking mental health and wellness resources and programming, nutrition information and advice, and sexual violence prevention education and survivors’ support.
“Western is dedicated to ensuring that our students are as successful as possible, and part of that is providing them with the support and information they require to lead healthy lives,” said Jana Luker, Western’s Associate Vice-President (Student Experience). “With this gift, the Fairmount Foundation has helped us to provide a safe, comfortable place where our students can access these resources in a personalized way and we really can’t thank the Foundation enough.”
The Centre, which operates on a ‘no wrong door’ policy where everyone’s questions are answered, is overseen by Wellness Coordinator Melanie-Anne Atkins, who is responsible for creating and facilitating mental health training and workshops, and a team of up to 15 extensively trained students, staff members and volunteers. More than 500 students have visited the centre since its opening in January 2016.
“It is my hope, with this gift, to directly impact the lives of Western’s students in a positive manner. I want all Western students to feel like they are a part of this community, and to feel as though they have had lots of opportunities for personal and academic growth,” said Heidi Balsillie, Founder of the Fairmount Foundation.
The Fairmount Foundation gift supports new health and wellness programming including an annual lecture series that brings speakers to campus on the topic of health and wellness. In addition, the Foundation has established an international learning bursary to provide students facing financial difficulty with the opportunity to study abroad.
The Wellness Education Centre is a collaborative effort between Western’s Student Experience and Student Health Services.
For more information about WEC, visit: wec.uwo.ca
MEDIA CONTACT: Stephen Ledgley, Senior Media Relations Officer, Western University, 519-661-2111 x85283, firstname.lastname@example.org
ABOUT THE FAIRMOUNT FOUNDATION
In 2013, Heidi Balsillie established the Fairmount Foundation with the goal to help individuals or groups overcome obstacles to move closer to living full, healthy lives. The places and programs the foundation supports are varied, but have in common the goal of lifting people up or lending a hand in their life journey.
Western University delivers an academic experience second to none. Since 1878, The Western Experience has combined academic excellence with life-long opportunities for intellectual, social and cultural growth in order to better serve our communities. Our research excellence expands knowledge and drives discovery with real-world application. Western attracts individuals with a broad worldview, seeking to study, influence and lead in the international community.