According to YouGov, one in four students is currently living with a mental health problem and nearly half of those students (47%) say they have difficulties completing simple daily tasks. I will let those statistics sink in for a second.
Now, even though the percentage of those aware of their universities mental health services (86%) and those students who those who have actually use the facilities (18%) is on the increase, the stigma surrounding mental health, especially in men, is still very much present.
The media's depiction of mental health makes it difficult for young and vulnerable students to feel relaxed in discussing their own mental health. Most students regard their own mental health problems as very personal and often feel more comfortable to work through them on their own. This has to stop now!
Not only is there a problem with the stigma surrounding mental health but for those who are willing to seek help, can be waiting for up to three months to see a councillor. Three months has proven far too long and mental health issues and defective habits might have already been formed.
Non-profit organisation Happy Space is aiming to put an end to this. By working hard to create a friendly and fun brand that teams up with experts to provide students with top quality tips on how to look after their mental well being during a transitional stage, which has proven to be very difficult.
University is a time where most of us friend our feet and learn how to take care of ourselves. Happy Space's mission is to educate students on their own mental well being, including topics surrounding diet, exercise, sleep and daily stresses and enabling university students to ask and answer the question, "why don't I feel ok"?
They have created a 90-page guidebook for students and university officials filled with all of these incredible tips. Contributors include professional sleep expert Nick Littlehales, who has helped coach football teams such as Manchester United and Chelsea in achieving high quality sleep; neuroscientist Tim Salmons discussing the perception of control; psychoanalyst Judith Apps describing the first week at university; MoneySavingExpert and Monzo who have contributed thoughtful articles on how students could manage their finances. In addition, Facebook superstars, Mob Kitchen, have provided recipes for students on budget. All this and more, displayed in an eye-catching, readable and interesting format.
A recent report published by the Institute of Public Policy Research states that diversification of resources away from traditional counselling is essential to truly help student mental wellbeing and that is what Happy Space is doing.
Check them out here www.happyspace.org.uk