What is it:
Mental Health Matters is a campaign run by the SU Welfare Officer that looks at the importance of mental health and wellbeing within different cohorts of students at UoG. This week-long online campaign will be running from Monday 26th April- Friday 30th April and will include themed days on what support, resources and events are available for these students, as well as Instagram lives with various university staff and organisations. The campaign is focusing on LGBTQ+, Black Asian Minority Ethnic Plus, International, Postgraduate, Mature, and disabled students, as well as the general student body.
The Experience Officers, a member of the Equality Diversity and Inclusion team and Asha will be leading on their specific days, and will be providing useful tips, resources, and suggestions for students to engage with.
How can you get involved?
You can follow the online campaign on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter as well as on the SU website, and can use the information to explore more into the different cohorts of students at the university, and what to do to help these students feel more included. The useful tips may be things that students don't already know or might encourage students to explore something new that they find out from the campaign.
You can also get involved by taking away the information and research ways in which they can further educate themselves and make a difference to these student communities by improving the inclusivity at UoG.
What to expect:
Here's the programme for what to expect in the campaign. The themed days are below:
Tuesday: Black Asian Minority Ethnic Plus students
Wednesday (am): International students
Wednesday (pm): Postgraduate students
Thursday (am): Mature students
Thursday (pm): Disabled students
Friday: General student body
Self-care as a queer person:
It's important you look after your mental health, it can be tough. But by focussing on areas such as self care you can help look after your mental health.
- Enjoy what makes you YOU.
- Look up from the screen once in a while
- Grab a Book- recommendations: Jamie Windust in their shoes, This Book is gay by Juno Dawson, more can be found on the LGBTQ+ society Instagram on highlights.
- Practice self-care: Do what you enjoy, get creative, cook, facemask, have a nap
- Connect with other LGBTQ+ individuals
- LGBT Chelt Network, LGBTQ+ society
- Talk to someone you trust
It always helps to talk. There are many reseouces catered to fit your situation. Below there are many different numbers and links that could be useful if you're finding it tough, or just want somebody to talk to.
- Mermaids (supports transgender, nonbinary and gender-diverse people): 0808 801 0400
- University switch Board: 0300 330 0630, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Stonewall: 0300 330 0630
- MindOut- 01273 234839
Find out more at: https://www.stonewall.org.uk/about-us/news/covid-19-–-how-lgbt-inclusive-organisations-can-help
Chloe Southworth is the LGBTQ+ experience officer. Her role is to feedback student views to construct changes within the university and the Students' Union.
- Try joining an LGBTIQ+ specific group such as the LGBT Chelt Network or the LGBTQ+ society. (They provide socials and a community for LGBTQ+ students.)
- Talk to someone you trust: Family, friends, counsellors available at university.
- Volunteer for a queer project, such as LGBTQ+ faces of Bristol. Search for LGBT job roles on https://www.consortium.lgbt/jobs/. You can also find local queer events on eventbrite!
- Practice mindfulness, join the LGBT Yoga in club in Cheltenham @accesibleyogawithsarah
Let’s get talking! Keep an eye out for our Instagram and Facebook posts.
Asian or Asian British people are one-third less likely to be in contact with mental health services
Risk of severe mental health disorders in Black Caribbean groups are nearly seven times higher than white groups
Asylum seekers are five times more likely to have mental health needs than the general population but less likely to receive support
Refugee Empowerment Project is a student-led initiative empowering refugees across the globe by giving them the resources they need to prosper. Every Monday they post mental health resources curated just for you! #mentalhealthmonday
Black Minds Matter UK has made it their mission is to connect black individuals and families with free mental health services by professional black therapists. They are making mental health topics more accessible by opening conversations to remove the stigma and remodel services relevant for the community.
Taraki - founded by student Shuranjeet Singh after his personal experiences with mental health – is working with Punjabi communities to reshape approaches to mental health. Their vision is to support Punjabi communities so that they will engage in conversations around mental well-being and awareness.
South Asian Therapists is the world’s largest online South Asian mental health community. It was founded by Raj Kaur after seeing a rise in the number of distressed messages @pinkladoo received during the pandemic. With an infinite number of professional therapists, people from all over the globe can find someone right to support them.
Here’s a few things you can do!
- Set aside some time each week for yourself to do something you enjoy
- Try something new whether that’s reading a book or trying a new recipe
- Do what you feel is best for you! If that means watching your favourite YouTube videos to reading mental health resources
The society is open to all students, and their aim is to make sure international students feel as much "at home" as possible, by working to hold lots of socializing, as well as running events and trips for their members. It’s also great to explore and join other societies that you are interested in.
The current international experience officer is Subbu Peteti, who works to lobby student feedback to the students’ union and university, as well as to enhance international student experience. Contact him here at: email@example.com
International student experience working group:
The university hold a committee where various staff members meet to focus on how international student life and experience can be improved. This is where topics such as diversity and welfare are discussed and reviewed for further work.
The Chaplaincy team run an International Café every Wednesday at 5:30, where they normally play table tennis, pool and have hot chocolates, but have been meeting online for quizzes and fun activities. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to get the link to join.
- There is a dedicated International Student staff team, who are on hand should you need any support.
- There is an International Student Facebook group, which you can join: https://www.facebook.com/groups/uoginternationalstudents2020
- ?You can book a meeting with the Money Advice team to see what specific funding is available.
- You can access all Student Services and book an appointment with any of the teams if you need some help. Book on the Future Plan portal.
Postgraduate Research Students’ Association (PGRA):
This society offers a range of activities for postgraduate students, such as social events like a book club and interactive sessions to get involved in. The society has a mailing list where you can sign up and join with like-minded individuals. See the page here: Postgraduate Research Students' Association (PGRA) | #TeamGlos (yourstudentsunion.com)
Contact Dan Clark who is the President of the society at: email@example.com
Whilst there isn’t any specific financial support for postgraduate students, they are however eligible for the Financial Assistance Fund, should they need support. Find out more and how to apply by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org
- If you want some support with university work, you can see the student achievement team for advice, feedback and help. Book a session with them on the Your Future Plan portal: Future Plan (glos.ac.uk)
- Both full time and part time students can access all university resources, such as My Glos and Student services.
- There is a specific page on Moodle, including a resources hub, guides, documents and more for Postgraduate researchers.
Join the new Mature Students Society and get involved with like-minded people
The UoG Mature Students Facebook group is the homepage for the Mature Students Society, it is your safe space to share experiences, ask for support and generally offload and chat with other mature students. https://www.facebook.com/groups/851299781729895/
Coming soon – A Mature Students’ space on Myglos, designed to give you quick access to the support you need as a mature student, from the moment you have your place at University confirmed and throughout your time here
Where to get support?
Useful Tips for Mental Wellbeing
- When things are getting on top of you, take a break. No one can work long days flat out for very long without keeling over, and your work will suffer as a result. Allow yourself time off to do whatever brings you joy.
- Own up to how you’re feeling. It’s good to talk, yes, but even if you don’t want to talk to someone else, allow yourself to acknowledge that things aren’t going well for you. Writing down how you’re feeling can be as helpful as telling someone else and can help you to process the feelings.
- Ask for help when you need it. Everyone needs help at times, and most people want to help others. Asking and receiving help is good for both parties.
Your Mature Students Experience Officer at the SU is Cathy Dean, who is also the President of the new Mature Students’ Society. You can email her at email@example.com or find and message her on Facebook
The disability team
The disability team can work to help you: apply for a dyslexia test, receive equipment to help with your studies, and support with extension requests If you have a disability, your DA1 extension is no longer automatically applied to your assessments. You need to apply by:
- Click student records tile on MyGlos
- On the top bar options, select ‘assessment, results & extensions’ and choose extension requests
- Click on the DA1 option
- A list of your assessments will appear, click on request for the assessment you wish to apply your DA1 extension to
- All done!
Disability Experience Officer
Katy Homewood is your disability experience officer, and she can help point you in the direction of support if you’re unsure where to go. Katy is working on many projects to help support those students with disabilities. You can contact her on via email, firstname.lastname@example.org
- MyGlos has an icon called Disability, Dyslexia and Learning Support where you can find support relating to your disability.
- Student services are available to help with any issues, academic or not. You can book appointments with them through the MyGlos appointments tab.
- Learning difficulties can make your head feel clustered. Keep taking short breaks in between work and revision
What support and resources are available for students at UoG?
The university offers a range of services, information and support to make your time at university as easy as possible. Find out more on the Wellbeing Dashboard on My Glos: Your health and wellbeing » myday (glos.ac.uk)
Dignity Advisers work to offer support and guidance, as well as promoting respectful attitudes and behaviour at the university. They can offer confidential advice and support to both staff and students. Speak to our Dignity Advisers (glos.ac.uk)
Togetherall is a 24/7, safe online community for students who are stressed, anxious or feeling low. Togetherall | A safe community to support your mental health, 24/7
Student Space works to make it easier for you to find support during the coronavirus pandemic. Explore a range of trusted information, services and tools to help you with the challenges of student life. Home | Student Space
The Students’ Union offers advice, guidance and signposting. There are 4 full-time officers who you can contact for help. The officers currently are Welfare Officer, Education Officer, Sports Officer and President. Check them out here: Full-Time Officers | #TeamGlos (yourstudentsunion.com)
There is also an advice section on the SU website, which includes help for academic support, LGBTQ+ students, harassment, discrimination and more. Advice | #TeamGlos (yourstudentsunion.com)
Get up and Go
Get up and Go gives students the opportunity to take part in free recreational activities whilst at UoG. This includes football games, Zumba and Yoga. Get Up & Go (yourstudentsunion.com)
Sports teams and societies
There are currently over 30 sports teams at the university to get involved with, including karting, tennis, equestrian and much more. All Clubs | #TeamGlos (yourstudentsunion.com)
There are currently over 50 societies at the university, including the Disney society, Small Businesses society, Bollywood society and much more. Join a Society | #TeamGlos (yourstudentsunion.com)
- Watch a video which will show you how to book a Mental health appointment through the YFP portal
- Screenshots of useful resources at the university, such as the reporting tool, wellbeing dashboard and 15 min counselling drop-in sessions
- Did you know there is a health and wellbeing events calendar at the university? Check out here: Health and wellbeing calendar (glos.ac.uk)
- Connecting with friends and family and socialising when you feel low
- Take regular breaks and do something you enjoy, like reading or watching TV
For any more information please contact the SU Welfare officer Asha Sutton on email@example.com