MUN Impact leads Peer Mental Health and Kindness presentation

Speak UP ambassadors and MUN students bring mental health education to the forefront.

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Evelyn Driscoll

#Bekind- Follow these challenges each day this week. Kindness Challenge week was created in tandem with the Peer Mental Health and Kindness Presentation.

Evelyn Driscoll, Print Editor-in-Cheif

MUN and Speak Up collaborated on January 25 to share the Peer Mental Health and Kindness Presentation virtually on Teams. The presentation, led by MUN students and Speak UP ambassadors, featured an open discussion about mental health and how it affects students. In addition, they share personal anecdotes and tips regarding what to do when students face mental health challenges.

The event is part of the monthly MUN Impact projects. For these, the leadership board chooses a UN sustainable development goal (SDG) and creates a correlating service activity. This month’s focus is SDG three, which is good health and well-being. Senior MUN student and one of the presenters at the event Amanda Duffy reflects on the presentation’s alignment with MUN.

“These projects surpass simply talking about these issues at [MUN] conferences and now extend to helping vulnerable communities around us,” Duffy said. “It’s really an amazing activity to witness and be a part of.”

The main topics discussed in the event were stress, anxiety, depression, and bullying. Along with discussing the warning signs of these challenges, the presentation also explored ways to manage them. Multiple presenters shared their own personal story, discussing tricks that have helped them manage their high school experience.

“I think hearing the personal anecdotes from my peers about strategies they have used when facing overwhelming stress or anxiety was my favorite part,” said Duffy. “Everyone has their own stories and experiences, so just getting a glimpse into each person’s go-to way of coping was really beneficial.”

The event was also the kick off of the 5 day Kindness Week challenge. The presentation had a strong focus on the importance of kindness and mental health. The challenge calls students to implement the principles of kindness and respect in their every day lives.

“While we recognize that kindness itself is not the solution to mental health struggles, we also believe that daily efforts to be kind and respectful to those around us can improve everyone’s life and bring so much happiness to our community,” said Duffy.

Within the theme of kindness, Duffy stresses the importance of being kind to oneself. She emphasizes that letting yourself make mistakes and recognizing it’s okay not to be okay can combat perfection culture. However, she also acknowledges that kindness cannot solve all mental health challenges.

“I think it’s important to recognize that having positive thoughts is incredibly challenging to do,” said Duffy. “Sometimes, re-orienting our perspective in a more positive and gratifying light requires help from counselors or therapists.”

Stay tuned for MUN Impact’s future projects on campus as they continue diversifying their range of organizations and projects.

Graphic by Juliana Soliman
MUN Impact– MUN and Speak Up lead a mental health education presentation. The presentation aligned with SDG three: good health and well-being.