Brown University Relaxation Project (burp)

Brown University Relaxation Project

What is BURP?

The Brown University Relaxation Project, affectionately known as BURP, consists of a group of student volunteers dedicated to promoting stress relief and relaxation in the Brown community. Student volunteers are trained by a licensed massage therapist to give relaxing upper back, shoulder, and neck massages.

What BURP Is and Isn't

The goal of BURP is simple: to relieve stress and brighten students' days. We are helping students get a different perspective on their day, and perhaps make it better with music, chocolate, and a massage. We simply want you to NOT about your stress for a few minutes, and enjoy a peaceful environment. It is important to recognize that we are not there nor trained to solve problems, and we are not there to provide any type of physical therapy or counseling.

Please check Today @ Brown for the time and location of our weekly sessions when they resume in the Spring 2022 semester. They will be consistent throughout the semester! No appointment is necessary. We use a first-come, first-served system organized via a sign-up sheet at the event, and each shoulder rub lasts between 6 to 8 minutes. For Spring 2022, BURP will also be available for events, meetings, RETs, etc. 

Contact BURP ([email protected]) for more information.

Interested in becoming a burper?

We are currently recruiting and there will be two trainings for new burpers in Fall 2022. To learn more, email ([email protected]) the BURP coordinator or visit our tips, suggestions and general expectations page. Be sure to also watch out for BURP trainings and events in [email protected] and on our Facebook page!

Requesting a BURP Event

Due to public health measures related to COVID-19, BURP is not conducting or accepting requests for events. Please email [email protected] with any questions or click here for the latest updates on BWell programs and services.

To make a BURP event a positive experience for everyone involved, we ask that you abide by the following guidelines:

  • Each BURP request must be received a minimum of 2 weeks before the date of the event in order to be guaranteed consideration. Please note that BURP events are not held during reading period or semester breaks, including the summer.
  • BURP events are scheduled for 1 hour. If you would like to request more than 1 hour, please include it in the request form for special consideration.
  • To accommodate each request, we ask that you give an estimate of the number of people you expect to attend the BURP session. This will determine the number of BURPers we send to the event. If your numbers increase or decrease significantly, please notify the BURP coordinator via email at [email protected].
  • Please inform the students, staff and/or faculty that will be attending the session what BURP is about and our policies. People have a range of different experiences with touch -- both positive and negative -- and we have found that it is important to give people the space to make the choice of whether or not they want a BURP session. Although a noble intention, please do not surprise your residents, colleagues or staff with a BURP session.
  • You are responsible for promoting the event. We have generic posters you can print, fill in your event details, and use to advertise.  If you would like to use our posters, please let the BURP coordinator know when you request the event.
  • Please be on time. The BURPers are volunteering their time and we ask that you respect this and start and finish according to the times you requested. BURP sessions last about an hour in length.
  • Each burp shoulder rub lasts between 6 to 8 minutes. The BURPers will have a sign-in sheet for attendees to sign. Please make the environment as comfortable as possible. For example, do not have the session in a high-traffic or noisy area. We ask for at least 2 straight back desk chairs to be provided, and we will provide relaxing music. 
  • Please fill out an event evaluation form after the event! The BURP team leader will give you this form to fill out. We value all feedback - help us make burp even better! If you did not receive the evaluation form, please contact the BURP coordinator. Thanks!
  • If you need to cancel the event, notify the BURP coordinator as soon as possible, at least 1 business day before the scheduled event. 
  • We make every attempt to fulfill all event requests, but please remember that BURP is a group of student volunteers with busy lives and schedules. As a result, it is not always possible for us to staff events and we will sometimes not know if we will have enough volunteers until the day before the event.

BURP will not be conducting or accepting requests for events for Fall 2021. We will resume events in the Spring 2022 semester. Please email [email protected] any questions.

Once BURP is back in service for Spring 2022, to request a BURP event, please fill out this form.

Please be sure to fill out all required fields appropriately. For any questions, please e-mail the BURP coordinator at  [email protected]. Please note that BURP does not do events during reading period or semester breaks.




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