At the beginning of this semester, Club Resilient opened their doors to the SLU community with a mission to empower women through discussions on mental health. The idea was first brought forward this past summer by Megan Tweedie, a sophomore, and Audrey Williams, a freshman, after they both noticed a lack of community space devoted expressly to the discussion of mental health issues.
“There are Active Minds and there’s other clubs that do a really good job at educating people about mental health, but there wasn’t anything for people who were actually struggling with mental health … There wasn’t anything to bring those people together,” Williams said.
The student-run organization is led by Tweedie, Williams and freshman Elle Flock. Echoing the words of her colleagues, Flock spoke on the importance and uniqueness of Club Resilient’s mission, stating: “There’s a difference between knowing in theory that it exists and sitting down with a group of people that are all open about it, all not okay and willing to work on it together.”
Club Resilient has a goal to not only try to improve mental health, but also to create a community of acceptance and support through open conversation. Each meeting begins with an introduction from each person in attendance as a means of building trust and familiarity with one another.
Introductions are followed by a brief presentation of the week’s theme, given by Tweedie, Williams and Flock. Some weeks, a personal experience or testimony related to that week’s theme is shared by a Club Resilient member.
Testimonies are organized by participants writing their names next to the themes they’d like to speak on, or they can email Tweedie, Williams or Flock. On the weeks where there is no testimony, club members participate in some sort of group activity.
The main mission of the club is to give every member access to a space where they can discuss their mental health. To conclude the meeting, each attendee is given a small quote or tip to carry with them throughout the week.
Summarizing the overall impact of Club Resilient, Tweedie said: “It just makes people know they’re not alone and that they actually can meet people that they can turn to [and] talk to.” Williams added: “Overall it’s probably improved the SLU community by building relationships, building conversation around mental health and hopefully improving people’s life in the realization that they are not alone.”