On February 8, 2017, Nicole, a University of Toronto social work student and her colleagues helped organize the “I love” event at Fred Victor’s Open House Drop-In. The event was a way to recognize and share the love and care people felt who use the program.
Arts and crafts, including card-making, button-pin making, bead art, and chocolate box designing to give to self or others were the “I love” event activities. Participants connected with each other and talked about loved ones and loved things.
Hot chocolate with lots of whipped cream and marshmallows certainly added to the warm and friendly vibe of the event. Nicole offered the idea that Valentine’s Day could mean loving and caring for someone who is not a romantic partner.
Meaningful also to the arts and crafters was the idea that loving someone else is important but no more important than loving self. Participants were encouraged to make something special for themselves and to take part in the aspect of self-care that comes with self-expression through art.
Nicole received valuable feedback and suggestions from community members and over the next few months plans to continue to organize events that help people meet their need to develop healthy self-esteem, self-care, and loving relationships.
To the right, Drop-in Worker, Dana Kirkcaldy, and community artist William Kenward.