VU Elevenses wellbeing

The Victoria University (VU) Elevenses program is a unique initiative to support the safety, mental health and wellbeing of staff, students and the general public. It provides meaningful ways to help people feel supported, connected and validate our life experiences, especially those extraordinary challenges that were brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The hugely successful program has been supporting the mental health and wellbeing of staff and students since March 2020. Initially run through online meetings it is now available on demand to members of the public around the world through recorded sessions on YouTube.

About VU Elevenses

A team of university experts in the field of psychology, physical activity, and mental health developed the VU Elevenses program. The team is led by Professor Alex Parker, a clinical psychologist and researcher in the Institute for Health and Sport.

For part of 2020, the VU Elevenses sessions were held live on weekday mornings from 11–11.15am. Favourite sessions are now available on demand on a number of platforms. The sessions focus on a range of topics with only one aim: to improve the wellbeing of participants.

The topics most often address one of six lifestyle medicine areas:

  • healthy eating
  • healthy relationships
  • improving sleep
  • physical activity
  • reducing alcohol intake
  • stress management.

The name, Elevenses, was inspired by Michael Bond’s famous Paddington Bear, who enjoyed daily 11am chats with his friend Mr Gruber. While the title of the program is whimsical, the initiative impacts its audience in profound ways.

"We know that the program has significantly reduced participant’s experience of depression, anxiety and stress."

"The sessions are made up of mini-interventions and strategies to help people manage and maintain wellbeing during this pandemic. We focus on ways to nurture ourselves and our loved ones, how to better manage such a massive disruption and most importantly, how to avoid being overwhelmed during the COVID-19 pandemic", said Professor Parker.

Save these links

View recorded VU Elevenses sessions on:

Links to other resources are also shared on Yammer and the intranet.