On the afternoon of Tuesday 10th October, there were a series of events happening in the School of Media in aid of World Mental Health Day – creating a welcoming, calm and comfortable space to raise awareness and create conversation on the topic of mental health.
Organised by a team from the Mental Health and Wellbeing department and the School of Media’s Student Success Advisor, Ella Robson, the afternoon included a mixture of art therapy and mindfulness exercises, relaxing activities and opportunities to gain information around different areas of mental health and different ways you could possibly get involved with helping.
The afternoon’s events started with an hour-long session from a University psychiatrist, Makhan Singh. He explained and discussed some interesting thoughts about his study into ‘the inner voice’ and the discussion that goes through people’s heads. The reflective activities he included in his session were an art therapy session (designing a book cover for the story of your life) and a mindfulness session (imagining you are in the future and writing your own obituary – sending the message that you have the power to do whatever you want with your life).
The rest of the afternoon included drop-in sessions, where people can find out about the services on offer, a relaxing colouring station, one-to-one chats with the wellbeing team and, of course, cake. One of the services the staff were keen to promote is a new free service available to all BCU students called Big White Wall. It is an online community including medically qualified advice and guidance, courses to help you manage your situation and feelings and an anonymous and supportive conversation feed to talk with other people in similar situations.
The afternoon saw a variety of attendees, each leaving with new insight/information on mental health at University, a more relaxed mindset or more comfort and confidence in the support available to them at the University. With lots of positive feedback around the room, hopefully, this event means there will either be more volunteers for peer mentors or more relaxing and comforting events like this in the future.
Post by Emma Benningwood, a second year School of Media Student