Clark State College will hold a Mental Health and Wellness Fair on Tuesday, October 3. This is the first fair at Clark State with a focus on mental health and wellness. The event is free and open to the public.
The Mental Health and Wellness Fair is an initiative of Clark State’s Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) chapter 2023 College Project. The 2023 College Project is titled: ‘Love Letters to Ourselves.’
PTK students take the lead on creating, planning and implementing an annual college project. The students have been meeting regularly with PTK advisor Nina Wiley, assistant vice president of student affairs at Clark State.
Wiley said the student-developed goals for the Mental Health and Wellness Fair include: raising awareness and educating the community on healthy and positive mental health practices, reduce stigma regarding mental health, normalize self-care and humanize the experience.
The fair is a collaborative effort with Phi Theta Kappa, Counseling Services, TRIO and Project Jericho at Clark State.
“I am proud to work with our Phi Theta Kappa students to host the first Mental Health and Wellness Fair on campus,” said Wiley. “We are focused on improving the overall health of our community. With the help of several organizations and businesses, we are able to broaden access to health care and wellness by providing educational materials, lifestyle information and screenings, and hands-on learning demonstrations and activities on campus, at a single event.”
Annalise Smith, vice president of service for the Clark State PTK chapter and the western district representative for Ohio Regional PTK, graduated from Clark State this past spring with an associate’s degree of science. She was inducted into PTK last Fall.
“The goal of the event is to create a beneficial and educational experience for the community to not only come together, but to increase feelings of wellness and self-care,” said Smith. “Additionally, (we) wanted to step outside of the box encouraging agencies participating to create an interactive and hands on experience for participants.”
Smith said the vision is for each agency to host a station where they both educate and engage with the community.
“We also have a few other booths and small events planned, including an interactive presentation related to the college project called “Love Letter to Ourselves,” she said. “This event will be completely open to the public as we hope to see some intense community engagement.”
Activities and demonstrations at the event include:
More than 20 businesses and organizations will provide educational materials, lifestyle information and screenings, and hands-on learning demonstrations and activities related to health and wellness including Mercy Health REACH (Recovery, Education and Prevention, Advocacy, Caring and Hope): an outpatient alcohol, drug and tobacco program, providing care for adults and adolescents.
Marcy Ivory, Tobacco Program Coordinator, Certified Tobacco treatment Specialist, LCDC III, Case Manager, said it is important to address the health risks of substance use and provide information on how an individual can make changes to enhance and rebuild their lives.
“REACH is committed to providing treatment and education as well as raising awareness and reducing stigma regarding substance use,” said Ivory. “REACH believes in the importance of educating our community about addiction, self-care and healthy coping strategies.
The Mental Health and Wellness Fair will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Tuesday, October 3, in the Clark State Eagle’s Nest, Karen Rafinski Student Center on main campus at 570 East Leffel Lane in Springfield.