Mental wellbeing is fast becoming the world’s most prominent health concern and is now recognised as a serious worry for students in Higher Education, with at least 1 in 4 students experiencing a mental health issue during University (this figure is likely inaccurate, with a vastly larger number of students likely to endure a mental illness). This is becoming notable with increased demand at Student Support, Wellbeing Services, Counselling Service and Students’ Union Advice Centre. It is these services, collaborating with the SU, which aim to tackle the issue with education, destigmatisation, and support signposting.
Last year we implemented mental health awareness in context, educating students through workshops about how to spot mental illness, and support those you know. These workshops also focused on mental health in Liberation and were operated by student societies, like Warwick Anti Sexism Society.
Several external speakers were hosted throughout the week to further educate and destigmatise mental illnesses.
The campaign has helped foster a culture of peer support and looking out for your friends on campus and has helped start conversations about tackling mental health stigmas. The week was also especially beneficial for highlighting the important work of our student members who support their peers and educate them too, especially on the nuances of mental health and liberation.
Students were able to either engage directly with the SU and student support services or to simply take the information they needed and leave with a better understanding of what is available for them, and that, even if only a handful of students were helped, is invaluable. Thjis was also an opportunity for our members to fundraise and to develop their presentation skills, to support more of their peers and to spread awareness of the issue of mental health and stigmas.