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Wellness Wednesday: Celebrating St. Vincent de Paul Heritage Week

Vinny Fest 2020
(Courtesy of Health Promotion and Wellness)
On Sept. 27, we celebrate the Feast of St. Vincent de Paul our name sake. This week is filled with events and invitations to share how St. Vincent’s legacy is still alive within our DePaul community. Be sure to follow @mmatmdepaul on Instagram and @DePaulDMM on Facebook for updates on Vinny Fest events this week.

As a DePaul family, we have all chosen to learn, work and live amongst a community of vibrant Vincentians that continue to carry out St. Vincent de Paul’s mission and legacy. If you haven’t been asked ‘What must be done’ take the time to reflect and answer that question. If you have been asked this question, hopefully at least once, think about ‘What must be done’ right now for our DePaul community and our neighbors, friends and larger communities?

At Health Promotion and Wellness, we know that there is much to be done right now in terms of social justice and healthy equity. As a department we strive to provide every DePaul student with the resources and education they need to feel empowered to TAKE CARE of their health and well-being, during their time at DePaul and beyond.

To connect our work with the Vincentian mission a little bit better, we answered some questions posed by our friends at Mission and Ministry, as we celebrate Vinny Fest this week.

How do you connect your work at DePaul with DePaul's mission and values?

We are constantly working to improve access, remove barriers and get students the help and support they need in a timely manner. We believe that our main responsibility is to empower our students to make the most informed health decisions for themselves, which is why we take a non-judgmental approach to health and wellness and talk about student’s options in terms of caring for their health and well-being.

What does the Vincentian mission mean to you? How are you carrying this out at DePaul?

The Vincentian mission means that we do everything that we can to offer support. We may not be the right resource but no matter what we will get you connected to the right resources you may need and we may also offer you support and resources you didn’t know that you needed. As our colleagues say ‘we are the resource of resources’ and we will connect you to whatever you need. It also means going the extra step, whether that is a warm handoff to a colleague or community partner or maybe it means just sitting there and providing an active listening ear and validating your concerns.

What are you most proud about the work you are part of at DePaul, especially as it relates to mission?

At HPW, you will constantly here us saying ‘Take Care of Yourself, Take Care of Each Other, Take Care DePaul.’ We take the TCD spirit to heart by practicing what we preach and reminding others to do so as well. Like the airplane demonstration exhibits: You must put your own mask on before you can help others. This is very important to know that we must fill up our own cups and take care of ourselves before we help others. If we continue to pour out and give to others, we will have nothing left to sustain us and this is not the best way that we will carry on the Vincentian mission. The TCD spirit falls directly in line with our mission of taking care of others and doing what must be done. Especially now as we navigate the pandemic, we must take care of ourselves in ways we may never have before or find new ways to take care of ourselves. We encourage you to think about how taking care of yourself will help you achieve your own personal Vincentian missions.

Who do you see living the DePaul mission? How?

There are so many colleagues and students that embody our Vincentian mission. From the director of HPW, Shannon Suffoletto, to our HPW student office assistants and our Health Education Action Team, or HEAT, peer educators, we are an office that embodies the DePaul mission and here in service of each other. We are so excited to share how our work is connected to our Vincentian mission.

Learn more by tuning in live at 6 p.m. tonight, Sept. 23, on Facebook​ for Wellness Wednesday with Mission and Mission where we will be celebrating Vinny Fest.