Colleges support World Mental Health Day
World Mental Health Day, organised by the World Health Organisation, took place last Monday and provided colleges with the chance to promote, among many other important messages, the power of sport and physical activity to positively impact mental wellbeing.
Events were run across a number of colleges both during and after the day itself, reinforcing the importance of mental wellbeing to students, as well as offering ideas for coping strategies in tougher times.
AoC Sport policy officer Kirstie Hickson, said: “It’s fantastic that colleges took the opportunity to promote the message of mental health and wellbeing, alongside the role sport and physical activity can play in assisting this.
“However, it is important to remember this isn’t a message we should only be promoting one day a year. Colleges have a vital role to play in providing opportunities for students, staff and the wider community to participate in a range of sports and physical activities, encouraging not only a healthy body but also a healthy mind.”
Below are a couple of examples of sessions put on by colleges for World Mental Health Day:
Bishop Burton College
Sports Development Officer, Eddy Birch, ran five one-hour sessions for a total of 65 students, explaining how physical activity can improve mental health and personal wellbeing, and enabling students to participate in a series of mini dodgeball games.
Students enjoyed a talk from former England rugby league player Danny Sculthorpe, with State Of Mind, making them aware of mental illness and how to spot it and cope with it.
Riverside College’s Keith Barker said: “It was a very insightful talk, with Danny being very upfront about his own personal issues after being forced to retire through injury.”
The student support services took part in the Mental Health Foundation’s Tea & Talk campaign.
This took place in one of the main indoor open corridor spaces in the college with refreshments, information and the opportunity to talk.
College staff also provided physical activities that anyone could get involved in – including boxing pads work and short and long-rope skipping – to enable students and staff to make the link between physical activity and looking after their mental health.