Mental Health Awareness week, which is hosted by the Mental Health Foundation, is in its 22nd year and ran from 9-15 May.
The theme this year was ‘Loneliness’. Across the country, people reflected on loneliness and how it impacts our mental health. Long-term loneliness is closely linked to mental health problems such as depression and anxiety.
To celebrate Mental Health Awareness week and to coincide with the theme, South Lanarkshire College set about combating loneliness by hosting a series of events across the campus, including a free staff coffee morning in the College Bistro, which allowed staff to meet up, sit together and have a chat over a free breakfast, while Students were invited to participate, by being offered a free healthy breakfast in the College Canteen. Students were also treated to a free catch-up coffee and cake in the College bistro and a free soup and sandwich lunch throughout the week. Each of the events were designed to encourage positive relationships, combat loneliness and demonstrate the benefits of good nutrition on everyone’s mental health.
During the week there were staff and student giveaways including, a Salon and Spa prize draw and discount voucher, and the South Lanarkshire College Student Association gave away an array of free mental health and well-being goodies. A daily staff and student Mental Health and wellbeing email gave lots of advice and tips to look after staff and student wellbeing.
Rose Harkness, South Lanarkshire College Head of Student Services said: “Supporting the positive mental health and wellbeing of students and staff, is always a key priority for us here at South Lanarkshire College. Many staff and students can identify with the theme of loneliness. Millions of us experience loneliness from time to time. We know that some people are at higher risk of experiencing loneliness and the evidence shows the longer we feel lonely, the more we are at risk of mental health problems. By providing on campus activities, we can work together to reduce loneliness and have a positive impact on our students and colleagues”.