The 2016/17 officer team wanted to create this campaign to:
o Remove the stigma around mental health by encouraging students to talk openly and honestly about mental health issues
o Highlight the services available to students both with Manchester Met and the local community
o Improve the University’s advice and counselling services
o Hold a series of events to raise money for local mental health charities
The first event in this campaign was a 90ft inflatable obstacle course outside The Union, which is repeated today (15 November) at our Crewe Campus – find out more. We wanted to create something that was fun and engaging, but also educational.
We used the obstacle course as a metaphor for students breaking down their own personal obstacles in order to be able to talk openly with them about the whole campaign. We understand that mental health is a hugely challenging topic to discuss, and so this allowed us to do it in a more relaxed and fun atmosphere. The obstacle course allowed us to engage with hundreds of students, talk about the aims of the campaign and highlight the activities we will be running in the future.
Zoe Hatchett, who is Chair of Rugby Union and studies photography said: “I was getting a coffee with a friend and debating procrastination. The obstacle course was a great way to start the day and delay the stress of my deadline next week! The guys on the stand were really informative and gave us loads of flyers…there are puppies in the SU next January!”
As well as the obstacle course, we had a variety of stalls; to educate people on the issues, raise awareness of services, gain feedback on personal experiences, and give advice and support, as well as raising funds for a local charity, Student Minds, who focus on supporting students with mental health issues all across the country.
One thing that really stuck with me from yesterday was the fact that so many students, whether they had a go on the obstacle course or just came across for a chat with us, gave so generously to Student Minds – this just shows how great Manchester Met students are! We had some students telling us that they think it’s brilliant that we are doing a campaign on mental health and that they would like to get involved in future events. To anyone who gave a donation, from 10p to £5, on behalf of the officer team, Students’ Union and Student Minds, I would like to sincerely thank you. Your donation will make a huge difference to students all over the UK and we massively appreciate your support.
Here are a few of the events we’ll be running over the coming week and months, so keep a look out and get involved!
o Andy’s Man Club – run by Rugby League
o Sport team t-shirt/social media campaign
o A talk/comedian at The Union
o Pledge banner for students to sign
o Sharing stories about students’ personal experiences
If you would like any further information, want to get involved, or simply want to share your experiences or ideas with us, please get in touch! We want to get as many students talking about this as possible. Spread the word, get involved and together we can create real positive change at Manchester Met.
Visit our campaigns page for loads more information, including events, activities and support on campus.