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Bethany Lacey, Students’ Union President, was elected for this academic year for her manifesto with a large focus on wellbeing activities.
She said: “I wanted to raise awareness about the services the College has to support students who are struggling with their mental health. We have so much that we can give, but it also relies on community donations and members of the College being aware of the services. Our Wellbeing Centre is always in need of support, so I created this Wellbeing Week to drive the message home, whilst providing fun, feel-good activities for the whole College.”
Beth was supported by newly elected Welfare Officer, Darcie Lilley, who took the lead on many of the activities.
The Students’ Union hosted a relaxed coffee and tea morning for students to drop in, meet new friends and have a chat with staff and other students.
In the afternoon, students were able to take part in mindful planting sessions, where they could pick from sunflowers and spider plants. They could also add to the ‘gratitude tree’ where they wrote down things that they were grateful for.
Tuesday was the day of the Rowing Competition. Students were able to access health and fitness information and take part in a rowing competition where the winner was the fastest to row 500 metres.
Holly Stokes-Geddes, Student Experience Officer said: “There is a strong connection between exercise and your mood. Even within five minutes after carrying out a mild physical activity, you will notice the positive effect of the exercise on your mood.
Exercise plays a vital role in stress reduction, with the production of a chemical substance known as norepinephrine. It moderates the response of the brain to stress while increasing your level of concentration.”
Nothing is more popular than a bake sale, and our wellbeing centre benefited from a cake sale in the street, led by our Students’ Union president, Bethany Lacey.
Not only did the cake sale raise funds the Wellbeing Centre to replenish their toiletries supply, but baking can also be a mindful activity for many people, as it allows you to focus on a short task with a satisfying outcome. If you are baking for others, it can also feel great to be able to share your treats with friends.
With the cost of living sharply rising, and less available funds to buy clothes, the wellbeing centre’s clothes bank is more vital than ever.
Staff and students cleared out their wardrobes to donate clothing, coats, shoes and bags to the clothes bank.
Head of Safeguarding and Wellbeing, Vicki Smith said: “It is important that students have access to appropriate clothing. Many students currently visit the wellbeing clothes bank to get blazers for interviews and coats to stay warm when travelling. Suits and coats can often cost a lot of money when they are bought new, and we want to be able to give students the opportunity to look and feel their best for job or university interviews.”
To finish the week, Student Experience Officer, Rosemarie Trent, led crafts and mindful colouring sessions in the Students’ Union, to promote mindfulness activities.
"Doing relaxing activities is so important for your mental health and me and many others find art to be a great way to relax and let go of stress. This is why I had craft activities available during Wellbeing Week and created tutorials on TikTok about the cheap, easy and accessible crafts students can work on in their free time!"