What about a ‘yarn bomb’? Maybe a Xmas tree? Let’s do it!
An idea started by members of the RGU Knit and Natter Group in the summer took off and after months of creative knitting, design and engineering, not to mention nattering, an amazing Christmas tree was created and put up in the Sir Ian Wood Building concourse.
The group’s engineer, Jenny McConnachie, came up with the plan for the design of the tree and everyone pitched in to knit the green squares – over 200 in total. After that it was onto the decorations – who would have thought you could even knit tinsel – and then the putting it all together. Many people, not just knit and natterers, helped supply wool, knit (or crochet) squares and decorations (including Roberta the angel) and generally making the tree happen. Thanks go to David Smith, Engineering Technician cut out the base circle and Judith Logan who helped organise a place to set up the tree.
The Knit and Natter Group was started a couple of years ago by the Art and Heritage Collections in support of the Fit for the Future Healthy University project. The group as grown and now has around 25 staff and student members.
The group meets every Friday lunchtime to knit, crochet, sew (in fact, anything with a craft theme is welcome), and natter. It is surprising how an hour away from your desk, knitting and chatting with like minded people from across the University can be so therapeutic.
If you are inspired and would like to join us then come and find us every Friday lunchtime in the Sir Ian Wood building front atrium between 12 and 2pm. For more information please contact Judith Moynagh
Wellness Wednesdays drew to a close at the end of November. despite our last musician unfortunately having to be cancelled at the last minute to a technical issue, the events seemed to be a success.
During the two month programme, the Fit for the Future group arranged a wide variety of activities – some with greater success than others – and we hope to carry on in a similar vein next year. These activities included:
Campus walks – these ran every week, leaving from each building at 12.30pm. Unfortunately they didn’t seem to be all that well supported, and we would be really interested to hear why that is. Whether you would prefer to walk along during your own time, the weather put you off, you weren’t aware of the walks, or they simply weren’t of interest to you – please let us know so that we can address any issues that we can!
Quickpose – Grays School of Art very kindly ran a short session of still life sketching. This was widely enjoyed by the participants but if we ran again we would take the comments we had on board, mainly that you would prefer more teaching and guidance during the session. We have also had requests for other art based activities, and subject to funding we hope to be able to offer these in the future.
Musician Performances – these have proved hugely popular and it has been great to see so many people attending. We hope to run these again next year, and we will also be looking for RGU students and staff who wish to take on a lunchtime slot, so please let us know if this is something that would interest you!
Yoga – sadly this was not that well attended, and as it was a late addition to the timetable it also suffered from lack of advertisement. However we would run sessions again if there was the demand. The same is true of the swimming sessions at RGU Sport.
Mindfulness – these sessions were very popular. Dr Steve Smith currently runs regular drop in sessions for staff, but after the new year will be rolling these out for students too. Please watch this space for more information!
Smoking Cessation – A smoking cessation advisor from NHS Grampian kindly came in over a lunchtime, but his stall was not well supported. Smoking cessation and fresh air policy are a very important part of the Healthy University message and something that we need to address in a more effective manner.
Healthy Eating – Aramark ran a Healthy Eating event in the Health and Social Care building, looking at vegan and vegetarian food, the Healthy 4 Life stand, and a sugar test to expose just how much sugar our favourite foods contain.
I think you’ll agree this is quite a comprehensive list – however we are always keen to find new ways of engaging staff and students, so please let us know what YOU would like to see arranged to tempt you away from your desk at lunchtime!
I hope some of you have managed to participate in the Wellness Wednesday programme to date!
On Wednesday 19 October we will be running QuickPose. These are drawing classes kindly facilitated by Grays’ School of Art.
Two classes will run, each an hour’s duration – one starting at 1.30pm, the other starting at 3pm. These will be held in the Amphitheatre of the Sir Ian Wood Building.
Creating art is a great way to relax and relieve stress, whether you are gifted in this area or not! It provides a great distraction from your thoughts and allows you to push aside your worries by focusing on something entirely different. So don’t worry if you have never picked up a pencil or sat behind an easel before – the classes are for all!
It is free to attend and all materials will be provided for you. Registration is encouraged though – you can do this by emailing me or by calling me on 3050.
Also, the Campus Walks will continue each Wednesday lunchtime, leaving from each building at 12.30pm
If you would like any further information on this or any other aspects of Fit for the Future or Wellness Wednesdays, please contact me using the details above.
I posted the other week about an exciting new initiative we are starting on Wednesday afternoons – here is a little more detail about what to expect on Wellness Wednesdays.
Fit for the Future are constantly trying to engage more fully with staff and students. One of our main campaigns over the last couple of years is to encourage the ‘Lunchbreak Challenge’ – that staff get away from their desks for at least a short period each day.
Wellness Wednesdays aims to provide activities to ensure staff do just this, whilst also providing a showcase for wide variety of themes that the Fit for the Future group is involved in promoting.
Every Wednesday afternoon during October and November we aim to provide some form of activity that staff and students can easily access, for free. The theme of each week will vary from mental wellbeing, to physical activity, and drug and alcohol awareness.
To kick start this season of activities, on 5 October Dr Steve Smith will be running two Mindfulness sessions. These will take place in H409 (Faculty of Health and Social Care building) at 12 noon and 2.30pm. There is no need to pre-register, please just come along!
Each week we will run Campus Walks leaving at 12.30pm from each building, using the ‘medal routes’ around Campus. Once again there is no need to pre-register for these walks.
Other planned activities include music, painting classes, yoga, healthy eating events, and a rowing challenge. More information will follow as soon as the details are finalised.
We are really excited to be bringing you such a varied programme and hope to see you at some of the events!
If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact me or comment below.