New CMHA P.E.I. course aiming to promote positive body image

·2 min read
CMHA P.E.I. education coordinator Amanda Gallant-Squires says the new course will look at how body image is linked to self-esteem and mental heath. (CBC - image credit)
CMHA P.E.I. education coordinator Amanda Gallant-Squires says the new course will look at how body image is linked to self-esteem and mental heath. (CBC - image credit)

The Canadian Mental Health Association is offering a new course for Islanders looking to develop a more positive body image.

The free three-week course will look into how body image is linked to self-esteem and mental heath, and offer some helpful strategies so people can learn to feel better about their bodies.

"Body image is something I see everyone has their own unique struggles with," CMHA P.E.I. education coordinator Amanda Gallant-Squires said in an interview with CBC News: Compass. "It is something that I think everyone experiences on one level or another.

"People were often coming to us wanting strategies, techniques to feel better about themselves, to feel better about the bodies that they're in and to feel comfortable in those bodies."

Gallant-Squires says the course will offer a safe space for Islanders to talk about their struggles with their body image. Participants will learn tools to break negative thought patterns as well as how to develop body acceptance.

She says the course isn't aimed to any particular group.

"People are spending more time on social media, which is a big factor that influences how we feel about ourselves," she said. "Often we think of women and young girls as being the target group when it comes to body image, and while that is a group of individuals that are likely to struggle with their body image, I think it's a lot of groups as well.

"We've spoken with seniors who are struggling with body image and aging, people with different abilities and what their body can do. Gender, age, body shape, size, those are all factors."

The course will be held in person in Charlottetown and Summerside. Anyone over 18 can sign up.

More information on the course can be found on CMHA's P.E.I web page.

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