South Asian Diaspora Community Healing Space

Identity, Upcoming

This group offers a place of connection and safety. Let’s come together, share what you’ve been going through, and receive support without judgement. This is not an information session about the pandemic. Open to all SFU students.

South Asian Diaspora Community Healing Space:

Note: Topics discussed within these sessions can activate a person’s emotional responses and you may feel grief, pain, anger, or sadness. If you find yourself in this position, we invite you to book an appointment with a counsellor or case manager with Health and Counselling Services by calling (778) 782-4615. SFU & FIC students can also access 24/7 counselling support through the My SSP app in multiple languages or over the phone by calling 1.844.451.9700 (Outside North America, dial 001.416.380.6578).

What is South Asian Diaspora Community Healing Space?

South Asian Diaspora Community Healing Space is a support group for students who have cultural or personal ties to South Asia. The goal of the group is to provide a healing space for students who have cultural or personal ties to South Asia to connect with others and offer peer-to-peer support facilitated by HCS staff. Any students who self-identify as South Asian, have lived in South Asia, have family in South Asia, or have cultural ties or roots to South Asia are welcome.

How does it work? 

Each week, we will be discussing different topics relevant to the South Asian diaspora such as current economic challenges, COVID-19, Farmers protest, gender-based violence, family pressures, discrimination, mental health and cultural stigma, and self-care and coping strategies. 

Topics include:

  • Coping with the impact of COVID-19 on Thursday, October 14
  • Supporting your community and building a sense of belonging on Wednesday, October 27
  • Embracing your identities on Tuesday, November 9
  • Cultural perspectives on mental health on Thursday, November 25

If you have any questions, please contact Samar at

Confidentiality note:

These drop-in sessions provide a safe, intimate space for sharing and learning. Please know that these sessions will not be recorded, and we will maintain confidentiality of all attendees. We ask that you do the same and honor the confidentiality of those in your session.

How do I register?

Register via the Eventbrites below.

Fall 2021 Schedule

Sessions will be held via Zoom.

Thurs, October 14 | 6:30 to 7:30pm

Weds, October 27 | 12:30 to 1:30pm

Tues, November 9 | 6:30 to 7:30pm

Thurs, November 25 | 12:30 to 1:30pm

Check out Upcoming Session for any updated times or changes to the sessions.

Upcoming Session

About the Facilitators

Harp Shergill (She/Hers)

Registered Social Worker

Harp is a Registered Social Worker and passionate about creating a society based on equity, social harmony, mutual respect and human dignity; while addressing racial discrimination. She has several years of experience in the field of social work and health care and joined the Health & Counselling Team at SFU in 2019. As an Access Case Manager, Harp works closely with you to understand your individual needs so she can connect you with helpful and valuable resources. She wishes to ensure students are seen, heard and valued.

Sabdanaa Jeyakumaran

Health Promotion Strategist

Sabdanaa is a Health Promotion Strategist who recently graduated from the University of Toronto with a Masters of Public Health and a specialization in Community Development and Global Health. She is a Sri Lankan Tamil Canadian who has experience working in Health Promotion developing, implementing, and evaluating well-being programs for equity-seeking communities. Sabdanaa is passionate about supporting the mental health and well-being of students.

Samar Gill (He/His)

Health Promotion Special Projects Assistant

Samar is a third year international student. He is a Health Promotion Special Project Assistant with a major in Health Sciences. As part of the Health Promotion team, he aims to create a safe and non-judgemental space for the overall wellbeing of international students, where they can express their opinions and convictions freely. As a South Asian, he seeks to break the societal norms that create stigma associated with race, ethnicity, identity and religion. Samar is passionate about gender equity, cultural mindfulness and mental health.