Saturday 10th October marks World Mental Health Day and the Wellbeing team at the University of Bedfordshire is encouraging students and staff to ‘do one positive thing’ to mark the occasion.
Every year the World Health Organisation observes this annual campaign with a set theme – this time it is ‘mental health for all’. The initiative’s overall objective is to raise awareness of mental health issues around the world and to mobilise efforts in support of mental health.
Julie English, Senior Advisor with the University’s Health & Wellbeing team, said: “We’re inviting students and staff ‘do one thing’ on 10th October that has a positive impact on their own or someone else’s mental wellbeing.
“There are many opportunities to make changes, such as going for a walk or calling someone you haven’t spoken to in a while. It’s easy to get involved with this national campaign by simply being open about your mental health with others, or have a conversation with someone about how they are feeling.”
After the pandemic forced the University to close its doors in March, the Student Support team worked tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure Bedfordshire’s student cohort was kept informed and supported and had access to wellbeing support and advice from home, if needed.
Saturday is #WorldMentalHealthDay and so this month our blogs focus on positive mental health during the start of new term. @actionhappiness #OptimisticOctober Read our blogs at https://t.co/DNBHdoU3Pk pic.twitter.com/ygvywDgPpl— uniofbeds (@uniofbeds) October 5, 2020
Mental health support is a key part of the Student Support team’s return to campus plans. Julie English said: “The University’s on-campus Health & Wellbeing team offers Mental Health Matters training for all teaching and senior staff. We also regularly consult with tutors and course teams about individual students who may need additional support.
“Although we primarily offer help to support our students, during lockdown the team recognised that staff also needed some extra support and so we provided regular contributions to staff bulletins and newsletters to help with their mental wellbeing whilst working and teaching from home.
“One to one support is also provided to staff by the University’s Employee Assistance Programme which runs a 24/7 helpline and offers confidential counselling and practical, expert advice.”
During lockdown, the University of Bedfordshire launched a mental health blog for students penned by Jill Gale, Mental Health Advisor at the Luton campus. Her latest blog post on the student Help Hub looks at anxiety and how developing a routine can help manage mental wellbeing:
Change can bring about anxiety and increase worries. It can cause us to find it hard to stay focussed on what we need to do. Having a routine is important to help us take control of our lives when events are changing. However, trying to stick to a routine rigidly can create its own pressure. It can take a while to establish a new routine when you return to university so be kind to yourself.
Read the full blog post here: www.beds.ac.uk/helphub/mental-health-blog
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