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    It's time to talk

    6 February 2020

    Here at Harper Adams we’re enthusiastic about making the university experience the best possible time for our students both academically and socially. Although this is an exciting experience, we know it can be a scary or stressful time for students, especially if it is your first time away from home. With dropout rates increasing nationally, we want to provide students with the resources to manage any turbulence through their degree.

    Mental health difficulties statistically impact one in four of us and, whilst there is a greater awareness of mental health difficulties, a significant dialogue to rewrite the stigmatisation is yet to emerge. A mental health difficulty can feel isolating, or even shameful, because there is a lack of understanding from others so thoughts and feelings may be kept hidden for fear of nothing being understood. Time to Talk Day encourages everyone to be more open about their mental health and listen to others, helping to change lives for the better. Harper Adams equally wants to break the stigma, inviting students to share their stories with their friends, Student Wardens, staff members, or members of the Student Services team, so that they can feel heard and seek the help they may need.

    Rebecca Hayhurst, Head of Student Services commented on the resources available to students saying: "The team offer a variety of sources of support and expertise to help manage any concerns in a proactive way from our Student Advisor and Student Wellbeing Officer, through to our Chaplains, Counsellor and Mental Health Adviser (RMN).

    "While we, along with the Students' Union, do partake in events such as Time to Talk, we also run specific events and workshops for groups to help grow their self confidence and ability to identify signs of worsening wellbeing in themselves or others. This helps students to manage, rather than simply react, challenges to their mental health and support others in the same way. No worry is too small for our team and we are here to help."

    Time to Change is a growing social movement, encouraging people to challenge their preconceptions about mental health as well as creating a space for people to speak about their feelings. Mental health is relevant to everyone as, after all, we all have it. Whether it is yourself or someone you know, their feelings should be treated with dignity and respect. You can access such spaces through University and Students' Union services with more information to be found on the Student Support page of our website.

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