The CSU introduced their new Gender Health Hub with a week of workshops and events.
Last week, the Concordia Student Union (CSU) kicked off their new Gender Health Hub initiative with a Health Hub fair.
The Gender Health Hub is a network of Concordia groups and services that “connects students to holistic, feminist and trans-inclusive health and wellness services.” It provides all students with free and easy-to-access gender related healthcare.
The fair last week was a way for students to discover the services offered by the Hub. The week- long festivities took a community focus with workshops that were discussion and storytelling based.
Some of the services offered include free menstrual and sexual health products, trans-patient support and advocacy, an abortion support hotline, as well as workshops and clinics on a variety of topics planned throughout the year.
The first workshop, conducted on Oct. 23, was on hormone literacy and discussed the role of hormones in menstruation, menopause, as well as hormonal replacement therapy. The CSU also provided goodie bags with menstrual products for those who stopped by.
The second workshop on the following day focused on surviving the healthcare system as a transgender patient. Jacob Williams, a member of the Trans Patient Union at McGill, discussed his experiences in the system while opening the floor up to others to share as well.
Anthony, a student at Concordia, was happy to learn from these workshops and collect resources.
“I came here to help understand how to support my friend during his transition,” he said, “and after sitting through [the workshop] and hearing everyone’s experiences and how they had to do their own research and, in some cases, educate the doctors and fight for their health that intensely—it’s mind-blowing.”
The Hub also showcased some of the other services the students have access to. They offered two more workshops that focused on mental health: an art therapy session that included coping techniques such as a body scan, and a mentoring workshop to create a safe space where students could share their experiences.
For students who missed the workshops, the Hub presented its network at a health services table fair. Some of the groups participating in the event included the Centre for Gender Advocacy, Sex and Self Concordia, Woman on Web and a few others.
To wrap up the week, students were invited to a party at Studio 414 on Saturday night, in celebration of this new project
Hannah Jackson, external affairs and mobilization coordinator at the CSU, explained that this is just the beginning for the Gender Health Hub. More events will be held throughout the semester—like workshops on massages for scarwork, and other programs to help trans-patients navigate the bureaucracy of the healthcare system.