Women’s Center Hosts ‘Healthy Love’ Carnival for V-Day

The Student Center Atrium was filled with snow cones, anatomy-shaped candies, and plenty of information about healthy love from 12:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday, as part of the Women’s Center’s Healthy Love Carnival.

“To celebrate Valentine’s Day, we’re promoting safe sex and healthy love, and we’re talking about body image and self love,” said Genna Ayers, the Violence Prevention Coordinator of the Women’s Center.

The ‘carnival’ was actually a setup of three tables – two manned by the Women’s Center and the third manned by the Health Awareness Team, a co-sponsor of the event.

While one of the Women’s Center’s tables contained Planned Parenthood pamphlets on healthy relationships and safe sex, the other table helped attendees put that information into practice with activities like a blindfolded condom race and the newlywed game. The game table also had anatomy-shaped candies and lollipops.

“I guess the snow cones and candy are just kind of the attraction to get people aware of this, and then we get them deeper in with the pamphlets and the other games and activities,” said Kevin Potter, the Women’s Center’s Men’s Outreach Coordinator.

The Healthy Love Carnival is the first event of the Women’s Center’s Healthy Love Week, a weeklong Women’s Center initiative to educate Ramapo students about safe sex, domestic violence, and self love.

“They’ve been doing it for a few years, it’s been evolving every year,” Ayers said of Healthy Love Week. “This is, I think, the biggest they’ve ever done it,” she said.

While the Women’s Center’s tables focused on safe sex, the third table focused on self love.

“We at the Health Club and Awareness Team are running a table about how to love yourself. So we have pamphlets about the basics of taking care of yourself,” said sophomore Emily Gang.  The pamphlets included tips on sleep, exercise, nutrition, socialization and time management.

The Health Awareness Team also offered smoothies and asked people to single out one thing they love about themselves and why. Those answers, along with photos of participants, will be made into a collage and posted on the group’s Facebook page.

“I didn’t expect so many people to want to participate. It’s been good, and people are entertained by it,” Gang said.

Although the event was intended to be fun, the message behind it is one the Women’s Center takes seriously.

“It’s important to remember that you should celebrate the people that you love all year round,” Ayers said. “But you should also remember to celebrate yourself and love yourself, and know what that means for you outside of a relationship and in a relationship.”

Other Healthy Love Week events include the Cupcakes and Consent Workshop on Wednesday, the One Billion Rising campaign on Thursday, and the Healthy Relationships Panel on Friday. The Women’s Center also hosts Healthy Love Parties upon request. For more information about Ramapo College’s Women’s Center, visit http://www.ramapo.edu/students/womenscenter or stop by the Women’s Center in C-220.