EUniWell celebrates peace and well-being at Linnaeus University

03/24/2023 | by Yelyzaveta Hordiienko | Event Linnaeus Participation Well-Being

On 18 March 2023, students from the Master’s programme “Peace and Development Work” organised the workshop “What does peace mean to me?” at Linnaeus University in Växjö, Sweden. The student-led event was open to all interested visitors. Yelyzaveta Hordiienko, a EUniWell ambassador from Linnaeus University, reports on the experience.

Five diverse people stand next to each other, they have their arms around each other and laugh into the camera.
A collection of reflections on the theme of peace on PostIt notes.
A diverse group of performers stand in a row in front of an audience seated on chairs, holding hands.

EUniWell participated in the event day with an introduction to the topic of well-being in relation to peace and with a run-through of the interactive game “Nothing can p*ss me off”. This game prompted a discussion about peace of mind and how to maintain inner peace in a stressful situation to promote well-being and health. While playing, there were two teams: each member of one team had to come up with a situation that stresses them out and impacts their peace of mind, members of  the other team had to think of something that brings them inner peace and well-being during a stressful time. Then they combined their experiences and responded to each stressful situation with a calming counterpart. The game was really fun and inspirational: Participants supported each other, gave valuable tips and laughed a lot!

During the event day, it was amazing to see the number of participants growing: from 5 to 10, then to 28...35... and then it became difficult to count, as the room turned into a lively sea, splashing in and out of its banks, with people coming, talking, and again leaving the room. As special guests, two committed members of one of the largest service organisations in the world - Rotary, who are based in Kristianstad - joined the event. They networked with participants and EUniWell ambassadors, shared their values and vision, and enjoyed the event.

The event was intended as a safe space for the participants to share their thoughts, poems, drawings, music, songs, feelings, laughter, pain... And people actually did! They opened up sincerely and truly, not afraid of judgement and receiving a lot of applause after their sharing or performance. These artful performances were very diverse; there was poetry, storytelling, singing, guitar playing, acting, as well as some interactive games. The participants were listening with feelings of connectedness and appreciation. It felt like at this moment the idea of well-being for students and society in general was fulfilled.

Not only was the event very international, but different age groups were represented: There were children drawing on the chairs, respectful adults listening to the performers, students mingling and chatting to each other… The very kind administrator, who oversaw renting out the room in the city centre, started to give people some tubes. At first, they were holding and staring at them curiously, and as they turned them in their hands the tubes made a crunching sound. Suddenly a woman appeared with a big drum on her waist. And the administrator was standing beside her with an even bigger drum. They were joined by guitar performers and drum players. And then it started! The rhythm, the music and the unity. No one could sit or stand still, and the participants rushed to dance. The crunching tubes turned out to be a musical instrument and the audience turned into musicians too. It was amazing, vibrant, joyful, energetic and uniting! Everybody was involved in playing and dancing. A sense of support and community was felt in the air as well as a real feeling of well-being!

During the event, people were also informed about FestiWell 2023 on 3 and 4 April and were invited to join this wonderful celebration at the Växjö campus as well.

Last but not least, we want to thank Martina Lastikova, who headed the organisation of this amazing event day.


Furher information:


This contribution was written by Yelyzaveta Hordiienko, EUniWell ambassador at Linnaeus University.
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