World Hello Day

World Hello Day is observed internationally on November 21st 

World Hello Day  – a global event with 180 countries taking part– was created in 1973 to respond to the conflict between Egypt and Israel. Using communication instead of force as a tool to promote peace, this day encourages each of us to say “hello” to ten people, be it an old friend or someone new. Extending a greeting is also one of the steps we can take to create and build social connections with others.

With the repercussions of COVID-19, World Hello Day is going to look different this year. Our opportunities to say an in-person “hello” to ten people are significantly reduced, but we can still find ways to connect with others. As Ualberta community members, we share a connection no matter where we are.

Importance of connection especially during the COVID-19 Pandemic 

Connecting online might feel challenging, you are not alone. 

COVID-19 has created a unique situation for us especially with how we interact. We have had to take everything we know virtually: school, work, family and friend gatherings. While we stay safe and physically distant, connecting socially and emotionally can still happen. 

Navigating the virtual space can feel different and uncomfortable at times, but the connections we foster can outweigh those feelings. Take the time to reach out to a friend, classmate, colleague, or family member today for a quick chat. 

There are plenty of ways we can continue to connect at this time, please see our list below of ways you can connect with your peers. 

How can I connect with my peers?

For many UAlberta community members, the campus, let alone Edmonton, may not be where we are physically studying, working, or living. In particular, U of A students have to create new pathways to connect with fellow students in meaningful ways.

No matter the medium, we know that social connection boosts our mental well-being contributing to overall feelings of happiness, a sense of belonging and feeling close to others (Seppala  2014). We are halfway through the term, which means many students are in the thick of midterms, assignments, and projects. It is easy to get academic tunnel vision at this point in the semester and forget about other essential aspects of our well-being. Social interactions may seem trivial when life is busy, but they help us thrive. Even social interactions with others that are outside of our close social networks like a lab partner, TA, Librarian or barista can foster a sense of belonging and enhance feelings of happiness during the day (Sandstorm & Dunn 2013).

We are still part of the UAlberta community, even if we are apart. World Hello Day is an excellent opportunity to try new ways of connecting with those in our campus community or in the communities that we identify with. 

Here are some ways to connect with campus community members: