Many join to teach wellness

To the Editor:

On March 16, Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School held its second annual Wellness Day. In supporting a healthy balance of the mind, body, and spirit, the goal of the day was to offer students the opportunity to attend informational seminars that promote the idea of wellness. The assemblies and workshops focused on making good choices, leading healthy and productive lives, and understanding and appreciating the diversity among students and staff.

This year each student had the opportunity to attend three of the 37 workshops being offered by faculty members and community volunteers.

I thank all of the facilitators who took time out of their already busy schedules to volunteer their time and educate our students (very early in the morning) on how to manage and reduce the stress that exists in our everyday lives:

Bob Tankard; Carolyn Evans; Amanda Cohen and Nancy Langman (Island Counseling Center); Craig Yuhas and Heather Neal (B-Strong); Max Sherman, Tina Fitch and Aita Roman (Connect, MVCS); Eric Adams, Seniel Seward and Curtis Chandler; Beth Toomey and Maura Weir (Youth Suicide Prevention Project); Jamie Vanderhoop and Theresa Manning (Youth Task Force); Ruthie Parmett; Patti Leighton and Tim Lowe (MV Savings Bank); David Pothier and Chris Scott (Coast Guard Auxiliary); Kaila Binney (Island Grown Schools); David Tuminaro; Catie Fuller and Tim Merriman (Blitz Fitness); Arlene Stark Prisco (Guiding Light Yoga); Erika Weron and Phil Fuentes (Duke’s County Sheriff’s Department) ; Karen Krowski; Fae Kontje-Gibbs; Stefan Knight (Vineyard Pilates);Jan Burhman (Kitchen Porch); Lisa Cottrell; and Julian Villegas (YMCA of MV).

Sixteen faculty/staff members stepped out of their daily classroom roles and offered workshops on a variety of topics, including “The Sweet Truth: Chocolate is Good for You,” “Speed Training for Athletes,” “Songwriting as Stress Reduction,” Traditional Dance, Sword Dance,” and “Senior to Senior — an informal conversation that combines the wisdom of age with the dreams of youth.”

Thank you to Tony Lombardi, Cyndy Cowan, Jack O’Malley, Steve Nixon, Carol Ramsay, Carolyn Evans, Jacquie Callahan, Bill McGrath, Linda Leonard, Tania Laslovich, Kathy Perrotta, Gary Simmons, Matt Malowski, Kansas Brew, Mike Tinus, Dianne Norton, Michael McCarthy, Donald Herman and Cathy Nee.

As I was planning this second (now annual) event, I was again impressed by the expansive knowledge and experience there is on our Island. And, for the second year in a row, I was amazed that with a few simple phone calls, a day can be created that offers 37 different workshops all focusing on the mind, body, and spirit and promoting wellness among our Island youth. It is incredible. Again, thank you to all that made it happen.

Amy LilavoisSchool Adjustment CounselorMartha’s Vineyard Regional High School