UFV’s Coast Capital Peer Resource and Leadership Centre exists to help students help other students.
And the ongoing support of Coast Capital Savings helps them do it.
The Coast Capital PRLC‘s mandate is to provide holistic help for students. At the PRLC, student peer leaders help students in a safe, welcoming, and inclusive space by identifying resources available to them and providing peer-to-peer support and mentorship.
For 2019, Coast Capital Savings has increased annual support for the centre from $50,000 to $85,000.
This funding continues a long history of Coast Capital Savings’ support fostering student leadership at UFV. Since 2008, Coast Capital Savings has contributed over $500,000 to leadership, peer mentoring, and career and personal development initiatives at UFV.
The increase in funding will allow for the expansion of PRLC services and facilities to the UFV Chilliwack campus at Canada Education Park.
“Coast Capital helps empower youth to achieve what’s important in their lives and one of the key ways we do this is by supporting students in their journey to educational and career success and ultimately financial wellbeing,” said Maureen Young, director, community leadership, at Coast Capital Savings. “That’s why we invest 10 per cent of our bottom line in youth-centred initiatives, including the UFV Coast Capital Peer Resource and Leadership Centre, a model program that develops student leaders and equips them to be change makers in the university community and beyond.”
UFV President Joanne MacLean is grateful for the support for student success offered by Coast Capital Savings.
“UFV is very pleased to continue offering new ways of supporting student success,” said UFV President Joanne MacLean. “It is well documented that peer-to-peer engagement helps students learn and further develop their skills. Since launching the Coast Capital Savings Peer Resource and Leadership Centre with the generous support of Coast Capital Savings, we have been able to implement student support and referral services that strengthen a sense of community at UFV. Community supporters like Coast Capital Savings help make UFV the kind of university that embraces a holistic view of student success.”
The Coast Capital Savings Peer Resource and Leadership Centre (CCSPRLC) at the University of the Fraser Valley (UFV), based on an internationally recognized leadership program model, is comprised of student volunteers who provide support to other students. Volunteers take comprehensive training to help them provide counselling and peer-to-peer service as a first frontline resource of support and referral, while helping those volunteers to develop and apply personal leadership skills.
The concept of a Peer Resource and Leadership Centre (PRLC) and of peer-to-peer support and engagement is well supported by student success literature. The willingness of students to engage in difficult discussions or to seek information from peers is also well documented. Students who are able to create meaningful social relationships and who receive service information and intervention at critical points are more likely to persist and succeed than those who do not.
Students who visit the Coast Capital PRLC find a friendly, welcoming environment where they can relax, connect with other students, take part in wellness-focused activities, talk to peer leaders, and find out about resources related to healthy lifestyles and mental health.
The Coast Capital PRLC takes part in campus-wide activities such as Blue Monday and Bell Let’s Talk. It also supports outreach activities with the UFV LGBTQ+ community.
The PRLC peer leaders provide student support, perform outreach duties, program activities with a mental health and wellness focus in the PRLC lounge.
They receive extensive training over the course of their terms of service.
“With the support of Coast Capital Savings we are revamping our volunteer training to a multi-level, multi-year model,” notes Ashley Ward Hall, PRCL coordinator. “Our peer leaders are trained to be curious, to ask the right kind of questions, to allow students to vent, and to listen and refer them to appropriate professional resources.”