16th February 2018

Exotic creatures, bouncy castles and specialist counsellors are being brought on to campus by the Bishop Grosseteste Student Union (BGSU) on Thursday 1 March as part of University Mental Health Day.

Challenging the stigma

University is a challenge. For many the challenge is tough but rewarding, however for some it is simply stressful with deadlines and separation from home building together to overwhelm.

Approximately 29% of students experience anxiety while at university. Many won’t seek help, either for fear of the stigma that still surrounds mental health issues, or because they just don’t know who to turn to. There are, however, people out there who are ready and willing to help.

Showing support for students

BGSU are making it their mission to show students they are not alone and should never feel ashamed to ask for support. As part of the University Mental Health Day project they will be hosting a day packed with activities designed to boost students’ wellbeing, these include:

  • Therapy Animals including dogs, meerkats, foxes and racoons to help students de-stress curtesy of ‘Oreo and Friends’
  • A ‘Check in your Emotional Baggage’ station
  • Representatives from local wellbeing charities and sport organisations including Addaction, Revival and the BGU Gym
  • Hand massages from Lush
  • A ‘Sensory Chill Out Room’
  • Peer to Peer Support Sessions
  • Bouncy Castle and Bubble Wrap Walks
  • Free Self Defence Sessions.

Breaking down barriers

All of these activities are designed to help show students where they can find support when needed and how to manage their anxieties and look after themselves in the future. Abigail Rogers, BGSU Manager, feels strongly that promoting positive mental health should be a core objective of any SU:

“The whole SU team are passionate about raising the profile of positive psychological wellbeing in the BGU community as so many students struggle with their mental health. This will be the third year we have been part of Student Minds University Mental Health Day and our aim is to continue breaking down the stigma and encourage students to feel confident to start a conversation and show them where they can get support.”

For more information on the work and activities carried out by BGSU visit their website.

If you are struggling or are worried about your mental wellbeing, our Student Advice, Chaplaincy, and Student Union Teams are here to offer impartial and confidential support at all times. You can also find confidential support through Mind and Samaritans (available 24/7).

University Mental Health Day takes place during BGU's Well Being Week.