Several Alberta monuments will be lit up in purple as Eating Disorder Awareness Week is being observed across the country.
Provincial organizers are rolling out several online events as well, to let people know that they are not alone, says Angie Mellen, acting executive director for the Eating Disorder Support Network of Alberta (EDSNA).
“I know that eating disorders are incredibly lonely, they are incredibly isolating, they can make you feel like no one understands, but there is help out there, there is support out there. We want to work with you. We really hope that you are able to reach out when you feel comfortable – when you feel able, and know that you are not alone in this.”
City Hall in Lethbridge and Red Deer will don the purple lights on Feb. 1, the Calgary Tower will shine purple on Feb. 2, Edmonton’s High Level Bridge and Epcor Tower will display purple on Feb. 3.
- Feb. 1 – Lifted Up – Prayer event – 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
- Feb. 1 – Eating Disorders/Disordered eating in the Black community – 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. Trigger warning: Discussions on eating disorders, disordered eating, mental health, mental illness, race, racism, discrimination and related issues.
- Feb. 2 – What did youth, family and clinicians tell us – 4:00-6:00 p.m. This event will be in-person at Silver Linings Foundation in Calgary with a virtual option as well.
- Feb. 2 – Eating Disorders and 2SLGBTQ+ folks – 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. Trigger warning: Discusses eating disorders, disordered eating, mental health, mental illness and discrimination among other topics. Online event.
- Feb. 7 – Hope In Motion Yoga event with registered dietitian and Yoga instructor Rachel Tu. This will be held in-person in Edmonton as well as online.
Mellen says their plan is to provide support for a wider cross section of people as different factors affect each community in unique ways.
“We are really looking at eating disorders in communities that are under-represented and under-served. We really want to dive deeper into these topics and make sure that these folks know that we see them – that we do acknowledge their experience and we do know that they are out there.”
More information on the planned events and available resources can be found on the EDSNA website.