Today is World Mental Health Day and I wanted to take the opportunity to follow up on our update published in August on wellbeing for our staff and student community.
Next week is Be Well Week for students, which will see five days of activities and events encouraging mental and physical wellbeing. Be Well Week is led by the SU and Student Services, with initiatives including productivity workshops and dog walking. It is an important part of the wellbeing calendar.
I’m really pleased that we are also offering free events to University employees through Wellbeing Kickstart Week which will run in parallel with the student events. This new initiative includes yoga and mindfulness workshops, walking groups and coaching sessions and I would encourage you all to take some time out of your week to participate in one or more of the activities on offer. I’d also like to thank the Safety, Health and Employee Wellbeing team for all their work arranging the week.
On top of these initiatives the Health and Wellbeing Steering Group continues to make progress on their action plan, including:
- The employment of a Student Case Manager
- Increased provision of student mindfulness sessions, which started last month
- NHS Improving Access to Psychological Therapies delivering new clinics on campus
In addition, since I last wrote, we have announced a partnership with leading mental health charity, Mind, and Goldman Sachs. The programme, named Mentally Healthy Universities, will provide support and specialist training to students and staff to support their own mental health and the mental health of those around them.
Days like today are important, but wellbeing is something we should be aware of every day. Hopefully these initiatives can help support our community not only next week but in the months to come.
Professor Bernie Morley
Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost
Chair of the Health and Wellbeing Steering Group