October events focus on self-care and community well-being


Well-being is often considered an individual responsibility, but the COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us that there is a communal dimension to well-being as well. Both the individual and communal aspects of well-being will be explored during CommUNITY Well-Being Month in October.

CommUNITY Well-Being Month will provide 31 days of virtual learning and discussion, including presentations, resources and suggested activities. This virtual series of events replaces the annual Wellness Symposium, an in-person event for UW employees that has been hosted on campus for the past two years.

Daily events will focus on seven dimensions of well-being, including reflection, mindfulness, environment, health, safety, connection and meaning. From Oct. 19–Oct. 23, live, virtual presentations will be offered. Live presentations will consider topics such as mindfulness meditation, healthy sleep, boosting well-being through nature, food and feedings, and compassion in challenging times. Some sessions will focus on COVID-19, including a presentation on parenting and a question-and-answer session about medical, environmental, community, and self-care aspects of the pandemic. Live presentations will be recorded for viewing later on demand.

The featured learning opportunities will also include a Racial Healing & Transformation Series, which will focus on the intersection of racism and health and well-being. Participants will explore community well-being through the lens of health equity and racial justice. Learning and Talent Development will be partnering with local and UW–Madison agencies that focus on community health and racism as a public health crisis to facilitate this series.

Participants in the Racial Healing & Transformation Series will move through the entire sequence as a cohort. Those who register for this series are asked to commit to and participate actively in five sessions, scheduled for each Friday in October from 9–10 a.m. The five sessions will incorporate self-work and individual learning, as well as conversation and reflection, to explore racism as a public health crisis, racial healing and community transformation.

Even though the current pandemic is limiting our ability to connect with each other at in-person events, UW–Madison is committed to supporting the well-being of all members of the campus community, including students, faculty and staff. Wellness is an important contributor to an engaged, inclusive and healthy campus culture.

All events are free, although registration is requested. Employees who wish to participate in the Racial Healing & Transformation Series are asked to complete a survey before they can receive the registration link.

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