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3 UNSW Student Societies Leading the Path for Better Mental Health

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In our Mental Health Toolkit (part 1, part 2), we talked about the services that UNSW provided for mental health support. We now want to spotlight fellow UNSW mental health advocates who are spreading a similar kind of mission to ours. 

In particular, students just like us who want to help destigmatise mental health and support each other.

It’s really great and heart-warming to see that across differing faculties, there always seems to be a strong, UNSW spirit to look out for each other. Here are some articles and people who have struck a chord with us:

  1. The Phil and Well Team from ArtsSoc

If you are in the UNSW Arts Society Discussion Group like me, chances are that you have seen some of the Feelin’ Well Friday’s posts! I know that personally for me, Friday is the day where I can finally catch my breath. I know that I have tons of things to do but once Friday night rolls around, I make an effort to try and just indulge in ‘me-time.’

Every time, I see a Feelin’ Well Friday post from the Phil and Well Team (example below), I can’t help but feel like they are my personal cheerleaders! From reminding me to take care of myself through things like reading to wholesome memes to helpful advice, of course, I would feel that way, right?!

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It puts a big smile on my face and it feels good that their posts correlate so well with my ‘me-time’ Friday’s. I especially commend them for their constant inclusivity of everyone from the LGBTQI+ community to those with disabilities.

2. This article from LawSoc

Even though I am not a law student, I could not help but start nodding along with every sentence that I read. Why?

Because as we touched upon earlier, the mental health stigma is something that is still highly prevalent. As Francesca points out, so many of us are afraid to speak out about our mental health as it can feel often “confronting, embarrassing and scary.” This idea of being perceived as “normal” is one of the biggest barriers when it comes to making those important steps in seeking help or even just simply opening up about our mental health to another person.

This is something that we uncovered in our anonymous survey where 14.6% of fellow students reported “embarrassment” as a key factor as to holding down these barriers:

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Kudos to Francesca Nyilas for such a thought-provoking article.

3. This video from UNSW Rugby Union Team in collaboration with headspace Australia

“Don’t keep it all bottled up. It might seem like it doesn’t do anything to talk to someone but it’s always worth seeking help…”

In collaboration with headspace Australia, it was very powerful to see this group of young men share their personal stories and open up about their experiences with mental health issues. Why is this powerful?

Well, according to headspace Australia, young men are far less likely to seek help for mental health concerns than young women and as Francesca talked about in her blog, it boils down to stigma. Seeking help is easier said than done when talking about mental health is often considered to be a ‘taboo issue’ within society. Thank you to the rugby team to starting a much-needed conversation!

Has your society been doing great things in advocating for better mental health that we’ve missed out? Do you have a story to share? Tell us in the comments below or send us a message via our Facebook page.

Take care and remember your mind matters too,

J.T.

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