Documentary, fashion show encourage healthy self image

Western Carolina University’s Love Your Body Day events to kick off Tuesday feature a documentary starring WCU students, faculty and staff talking candidly about body image and a fashion show celebrating the beauty of people diverse in appearance.

The events are designed to raise awareness of the standards of beauty projected in the media related to weight, height or other physical traits, and then encourage participants to realize they can set their own standards of what beauty is, said Sara Stoltenburg, director of the Women’s Center.

“Love Your Body Day, simply put, is about loving your body as it is right now,” Stoltenburg said.

The events include a roundtable discussion about women, physical disabilities, and perceptions at noon Tuesday, Oct. 24, in A.K. Hinds University Center, a documentary about body image showing at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 24, in the University Center’s theater, and a fashion show at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 25, in Club Illusions at the University Center.

“Women and men of all sizes, shapes and ethnicities participate in the fashion show, including faculty and staff,” Stoltenburg said. “Participants are asked to wear an outfit that makes them feel comfortable, powerful or sexy.”

Beth Walden, an international student adviser, volunteered to be recorded for this year’s installment of the body image documentary as a way to help college students who struggle with healthy body images

“A person’s body is something they should have a healthy relationship with, whether that’s drinking enough water or physical activity,” she said. “Your body is different and special, and you should be proud.”

For more information, contact Stoltenburg at (828) 227-3982 or check out (link no longer active).