Improving student mental wellbeing and tackling the stigma attached to mental illness.
Who we are
Think Positive is NUS Scotland’s student mental health project. The project aims to find ways to support students experiencing mental ill health, tackle stigma and discrimination, and promote wellbeing in colleges and universities
This week we have a guest blog from the lovely folk at Stirling University Students' Association. They'll be sharing the work their sabbaticals are focusing on this year and how they plan on working on improving student wellbeing.
Stirling SU's 2018/19 sabbatical officers
Mental Health: A Shared Vision
This year at The University of Stirling Students’ Union, a common theme running through each Sabbatical Officer manifesto was a commitment to tackling poor mental health. This shared priority comprises of 4 streams tailored to the specific Zone and remit of each Sabbatical Officer.
The first stream, ‘Mental Health & Wellbeing Strategy’, sits primarily with the Union President, Astrid Smallenbroek. On the macro level, Astrid will focus on partnership building with the University to develop a cohesive and joined-up approach on resource usage, processes and policy. The strategy will consider both students and staff looking at how to combat poor mental health, but also how to keep those who are well on track.
The second strand called ‘Mental Health in Your Studies’ is implemented by Vice President Education, Daniel Wright. Daniel will concentrate his efforts on the educational implications poor mental health can have on a students’ studies, by seeking reform of the Personal Tutors system into a more cohesive structure with an academic purpose, alongside examining the potential for resilience and further mental health training.
In the third component, ‘Mental Health in Your Community’, is overseen by Vice President Communities, Jamie Grant. Jamie aims to refresh and relaunch the existing system of peer-support for Mental Health through the STEER programme. He also hopes to roll-out Scottish Mental Health First Aid training to as many students involved in clubs and societies as possible.
Finally, Sports President, Caitlin Ormiston aims to develop roots of the national campaign ‘Healthy Body, Healthy Mind’ here at Stirling, by emphasising the relationship physical health shares with mental wellbeing, and encouraging all students to participate in sports whether that is competitive or not.
Together, the four sabbaticals will also organise a 'Mental Health Week'. This will host a varied range of events organised by clubs, societies, sports teams, and any students wanting to get involved. The events will all surround the theme of mental health and wellbeing. The aim of this week is to raise awareness and open up conversations surrounding mental health and wellbeing.
We hope that this joined-up approach to tackling poor mental health will contribute towards our overall goal of #MakingStudentsLivesBetter
On Monday 3rd September we’ll be holding a launch event at Norton Park Conference, Edinburgh, where we’ll be discussing the projects in more depth and exploring ways you can develop your work in this existing area.