Welcome to WUSA 101! WUSA 101 highlights WUSA initiatives, clubs, student support systems, and more to help you stay up to date and learn exactly what we do to support your everyday life at the University of Waterloo. In this edition, we will be getting to know Racial Advocacy for Inclusion, Solidarity and Equity (RAISE), and all that they do for addressing, as well as challenging, racism and xenophobia across UWaterloo’s campuses. This student-led service actively works to foster unity and equality within our community.
Read the Q&A below to learn more about RAISE from the voices of students at RAISE. Each question is answered by a different student involved with the service! Also, SAVE THE DATE, on Friday, November 26, 2021 at 12:00 PM EST, tune into the @yourWUSA IG story for a takeover from @uwraise to have your questions answered.
Q: Tell us a little about yourself and your role at RAISE!
A: “My name is Celine Isimbi (she/her) and I have been working with RAISE since the spring of 2020. First as a volunteer and then two terms as the Advocacy Director, where I worked with the previous team to organize Xchanges 2021: Borders of Being – which was an absolute success! I knew then that I wanted to be more involved with RAISE and be a part of the community. That was how I applied to be a coordinator in the Spring of 2021.”
Q: What services does RAISE offer for undergrads?
A: RAISE offers peer-to-peer support, social events to cultivate community, and educational resources. Our three pillars are Education and Advocacy, Peer-to-Peer Support, and community building!
Q: Where is the RAISE office located and what are your hours?
A: “The RAISE office is currently located in SLC 2141! The office is open for peer support on Monday-Thursday at 1pm-3pm. We also have a space in the Multi-Purpose Room in SLC where students can come to study, relax, or ask a volunteer about RAISE (open Monday-Thursday from 1pm-3pm)! We also hold virtual peer support hours through Microsoft Teams on Monday-Thursday at 10am-12pm & 2pm-4pm and Friday at 10am-12pm.”
Q: How can undergrads get involved with RAISE?
A: “Getting involved with RAISE can be super simple for undergraduate students! First, you can dip your toe in by attending one of our events, like a Vibes Night, Study Session, or our big conference: Xchanges coming next term, to get a feel of us and our strides to creating an uplifting community at UW. You can also come visit the RAISE office, take a seat on our couch, and strike up a conversation about anything to get to know us through our members.
If you feel you want to be more involved, you can apply to volunteer with us! As a volunteer, you get to meet tons of like-minded peers from all different walks of life, work with executive members to shape our events and projects, and develop a sense of what it means to boldly address the impacts of systematic racism and proudly advocate for inclusivity, solidarity, and equity.
Volunteer applications for Winter 2022 are currently still open so feel free to apply!”
Q: How can undergrads stay up to date with all things RAISE?
A: “One of the primary ways is to check out our social media channels, preferably on Instagram @uwraise as we are the most active there. You can also find us through Facebook and Twitter using the same handle. We post all of our events and resources for students who want to participate or learn more about RAISE. Also, take a look at our link in bio! There we have up-to-date information and resource links right at your disposal. If anything, you can reach out to us directly through DM and we will answer back!
If you are on campus this term, or the following, feel free to drop by the RAISE office, check out the bulletin board, or stop in during our office hours to ask us any questions on how you can connect, learn more, and become a part of RAISE (such as our pillars)! We also have our website available with more insight on peer support, our mentorship programs and more!“
Thanks for stopping in to get to know the change-makers behind RAISE. Next term is looking exciting with the return of RAISE’s annual XChanges conference. Their team is currently working hard in the planning stages and is excited to share the fruits of their labor with our community!
Don’t forget to tune into the @yourWUSA IG account for the RAISE takeover happening on Friday, November 26, 2021 at 12:00 PM EST. They will be doing a deeper dive into all things RAISE, discussing the projects they are involved with, and answering your questions! Take this opportunity to get to know about the people behind the service and for a glimpse of their Xchanges 2022 planning!