Via the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau
At 5pm on a Thursday, singing emerges from the seminar room. Students and clinical instructors sit around the table. Staff from other centers linger as they exit the building. No, HLAB hasn’t started a choir. Lisa Fitzgerald ’16 is treating the Bureau to a private concert, as part of the new self-care initiative.
Donna Harati ’15 began the self-care initiative in the fall of 2014 to help other Bureau members ensure they take care of their mental health, so that they can provide quality legal services to their clients—in the short and long term.
Since its inception, students have organized weekly activities to take a break from clinical and coursework. Activities include knitting, meditating, touch football, making pasta and decorating gratitude jars.
Jordan Raymond ’16 has always recognized that she needs to carve out time for self-care. “Self-care is paramount to me. Sometimes, when I feel drained, I drive to the beach because that’s my happy place and that’s where I can find peace. It’s nice that we are trying to create those peaceful spaces here at the Bureau.”
The Bureau’s self-care initiative subscribes to many models of and philosophies of self-care. Students, clinical instructors and staff alternate in facilitating activities that help them feel grounded.
“There’s no one correct way to take care of yourself, and I’ve learned a lot from what other people have shared. Personally, I like cooking to de-stress, so I led a session in pasta making,” said Nick Pastan ’15.
Continue reading the full story here.
Filed in: Clinical Spotlight
Tags: Harvard Legal Aid Bureau
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