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SMC launches Love Your Body Week

| Monday, February 24, 2014

This week marks the fourth annual Love Your Body Week at Saint Mary’s, a time for members of the community to reflect on positive self-image and a healthy lifestyle.
According to Love Your Body Week event chair and junior Sam Moorhead, the week’s events are intended to provide encouragement to women who may be struggling with body image-related issues, such as eating disorders or pop culture’s portrayal of beauty.

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“We hope that people who are struggling with these sorts of issues can find encouragement through the events of the week,” Moorhead said. “We want to encourage women to see themselves as beautiful, despite our many imperfections.”
Junior Kelly Gutrich, a former coordinator of Love Your Body Week, said it is one of the most constructive initiatives during the school year at the College.
“When Laura Glaub started Love Your Body Week four years ago, the point was to inspire self-confidence in women, because it is such a controversy with the images in the media in our current world,” Gutrich said. “In continuing Glaub’s mission and recognizing that there are many positive ways to reinforce body image in young women, the week’s events can be beneficial for all members of our community.”
Gutrich said she is also excited Notre Dame has followed the tradition of Love Your Body Week to cultivate the dialogue between communities.
“I like when both Saint Mary’s and Notre Dame devote weeks to raising awareness of similar issues,” Gutrich said. “It’s uplifting when both campuses believe in promoting this issue, because it demonstrates how we are always striving to be supportive of one another.”
According to Moorhead, the week’s events include a variety of speakers and fun events every night.
“On Monday, Christina Grasso will speak about her battle with anorexia,” Moorhead said. “She spoke two years ago during Love Your Body Week as well, and we hope that in sharing her story once more, she can provide hope to women who may relate to her struggles.”
Gutrich said she is excited for Grasso to return to campus once again.
“[Grasso] has an incredible story and I can’t wait for more students to be moved by her courageous development of the organization Project HEAL (Help to Eat, Accept and Live),” Gutrich said. “Grasso is a true Saint Mary’s woman, empowered by her sense of self and dedicated to making a difference in the community. It will definitely be one of the most inspirational events of the week.”
Moorhead said free yoga classes would be held on Tuesday and Wednesday to encourage exercise alongside healthy minds. On Thursday, the Belles Against Violence Office (BAVO) will host a Self-Awareness and Familiarization Exchange (S.A.F.E.) event, where students can learn about self-defense.
Moorhead said she hopes this week will increase dialogue related to prevalent issues that are seldom discussed amongst the women on campus.
“We would love for students to come out of this week having learned ways to form a healthier and happier lifestyle for themselves,” Moorhead said.  “If they are struggling with body image-related issues, we want them to know that they have the support of the Saint Mary’s community.
“We hope that this will be a week that encourages each woman in the Saint Mary’s community to see the beauty in herself.”
For a full list of events, visit the Saint Mary’s website’s event calendar.

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About Kelly Konya

Kelly Konya is an English major bred on Catcher in the Rye and Roman cornettos.

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