international students mental health guide - web

swanseaunisu

SWANSEA UNIVERSITY STUDENTS’ UNION

INTERNATIONAL

STUDENTS

MENTAL HEALTH

GUIDE

SWANSEA

UNIVERSITY

STUDENTS’

UNION

UNDEB

MYFYRWYR

PRIFYSGOL

ABERTAWE


The Mental Health of our international students is a major priority in our Swansea

University Student’s Union.

It is understandable that moving to a new country to study introduces many barriers you

may not be used to. Examples of these barriers include different learning methods,

making new friends, a new climate, a different time zone, language barriers and moving

away from family and friends and the possible effect on communication to them.

This guide is aimed to provide students with the appropriate tools to go about accessing

support and some potential self-care tips, which may be crucial consider the major life

change of moving to Swansea.

We at the Student’s Union want you to know you are not alone! We understand you may

feel lonely, you may worry about finances, you may be stressed about exams, you may feel

you need to prove yourself to your families and you may even be concerned about how the

impact of Covid-19 affects your student life and access to support.

Adapting to UK Culture

Swansea University’s International Information Guide is a comprehensive resource for

international students coming to live and study in Wales. It includes detailed information

about many aspects of Welsh life as well UK culture and more practical tips dealing with

shopping, transport, health and support available to you- both inside and outside the

University.

You can download the guide here:

https://www.swansea.ac.uk/media/International-Students-Infomation-Guide-2020.2021-(3).pdf.

Isolating/Quarantine?

Many international students may have to isolate on arrival to Swansea for a period, starting

with your 14-day quarantine when you arrive in the country.

While it may be hard to not have any physical interactions for a while, make sure to take

this time and stay in contact with anyone you are comfortable speaking to, this may be

friends or family. Make sure to let them know how you are feeling.


Swansea University’s Welfare@CampusLife service have developed a

dedicated Facebook page for students in quarantine/self-isolation called ‘The Space’

(https://www.facebook.com/groups/344497426961770).

‘The Space’ has been set up for Swansea University students who are required to physically

separate from others on arrival in the country, due to Covid19. We are your online community

for support, friendship, and shared activities which we hope will make everyone feel a

little more connected during these unusual times.

We will be sharing a daily programme of online activities for everyone to join in as they

wish. Remember this is your space to use in the way which best supports you so please do

not feel pressure to participate in everything (unless you want to!).

Here are the types of posts and activities you can expect to see:

A Space to Meet – morning meet ups* OR posts to help you get to know each

other

A Space to Grow – sharing posts and activities that make you think.

A Space to Move – time to get active and get your body moving.

A Space to Care – sharing prompts, ideas and activities for self-care

*Morning Meetups: These will be a chance to have a chat with each other over Zoom and

will be on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 10am.

Swansea University have also created the ‘MyUniSupport’ team for students

self-isolating/quarantining. The team will be in regular email contact with you, every

weekday. Checking in to see you are ok and if there is anything, we can support you with

which includes assistance with accessing food and other services. You can contact:

MyUniSupport@swansea.ac.uk.

The Students Union also provides a great Advice and Support Service

(https://www.swansea-union.co.uk/support/advicesupportcentre) and there is always a

friendly advisor on there to offer their support for a wide range of issues that students

encounter.

If you’re looking for someone to speak to in private,

Swansea University’s Faith@CampusLife team offer a listening service

(https://www.swansea.ac.uk/campuslife/faithcampuslife/the-listening-service)

There does not have to be any particular issue or problem, sometimes it is just good to talk.


The government guidelines on Covid-19 restrictions are always being updated, for the latest

updates take a look at https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

For guidance and checklists on how higher education institutions should cater to

self-isolating students arriving to the UK, take a look at

https://www.universitiesuk.ac.uk/policy-and-analysis/reports/Documents/2020/self-iso

lation-guidance.pdf

Self Care

Something else you can do to maintain good Mental Health is having a routine. Time can

get away from you in isolation but try to have regular sleeping patterns, mealtimes etc.

Include where possible some physical activity (see options below).

Self-Care during Self-Isolation/Quarantine

Whilst you are unable to leave your residence during any self-isolation/quarantine period

the Student’s Union and Swansea University have a range of online options available

including Try have some type of physical activity, this could be through singing, yoga,

dancing etc, as long as it’s within your quarantine space.

If you’re looking for more, please make sure to check in to our Well-being Wednesdays! This

will be a partnership between our Wellbeing Champions and our Students’ Union.

Self-Care after Self-Isolation/Quarantine

If you are looking for options when you have completed the self-isolation/quarantine period,

please make sure to check in to your Students’ Union website to keep up to date with any

socially distanced events or campaigns we may be running. Also take this time to finally

take a walk

You can find out more on our social media channels

@SWANSEAUNISU


The UK and Mental Health

Many international students feel a need to not express any issues they may have due to

social conformities back home. The UK, however, has created a space in which any mental

health problems are treated with the highest importance, this is reflected in Swansea

University as well.

With that being said here are some myths that may arise when you’re considering seeking

mental health assistance:

‘I’m too embarrassed, I’ve never had a mental health problem

before’ ‘we don’t speak about this in my home country’

It is important to understand how common it is to encounter these problems. A study done

by YouGov has shown that One in Four students will experience a mental health problem

while in university. There’s no harm in identifying this and seeking help or resources.

‘I don’t want any of my friends or family to know’

Swansea University services will always keep your information confidential (unless there is a

risk of harm to you or others), as such it will never be relayed back to your family, friends or

even show up on your university record.

Here is some useful contact information and possible scenarios where you may need to

contact them:

Your Student Union Officers:

The Students’ Union

Comfort Obaje

International Part Time Officer

internationalofficer@swansea-union.co.uk

Liza Leibowitz

Welfare Full Time Officer

liza.leibowitz@swansea-union.co.uk

Your Union Officers are here to help you with any queries you may have being a student in

Swansea University. Being a student automatically makes you a member of the Students’

Union. We are here to better enhance your student experience.

Our Officers will run a wide range of campaigns throughout the year, some of which are

specified to aiding and increasing mental health awareness.


Looking for Faith/Cultural Services?

It can be hard grasping how to maintain your faith practices after moving to a new

country. Swansea University offers a Multi-Faith Chaplaincy run by the Faith@CampusLife

Service. You can find more information here:

https://www.swansea.ac.uk/campuslife/faithcampuslife

We as the Student’s Union also offer multiple Faith/Cultural Societies, for information on

what society you’d like to join take a look at

https://www.swansea-union.co.uk/activities/

For information on how to join these services, feel free to contact:

georgia-rose.gleeson@swansea-union.co.uk.

GENERAL SUPPORT

Finances

We have a dedicated Money Advice service who are here to provide information, advice

and guidance on student money-related issues. Money@CampusLife offer live chat

services and can be contacted by email. For more information please see here:

https://www.swansea.ac.uk/money-campuslife/live-chat/.

International@CampusLife

Any queries you have about being an international student in the UK you can reach out to

International@CampusLife Service. International@CampusLife offer live chat services

and can be contacted by email. For more information please see here:

https://www.swansea.ac.uk/international-campuslife/icl-live/.


Advice and Support Centre

If you need any advice or support for various issues including money worries, academic

troubles, and housing problems. Additionally, advice on legal issues and support you with

personal matters.

Email: advice@swansea-union.co.uk

Phone: 01792 295 821

Wellbeing Services

This service is especially for students with a mental health diagnosis or disability. You can

find more on how they offer support at: https://www.swansea.ac.uk/wellbeing

You can also email the team at: wellbeing@swansea.ac.uk.

Welfare@CampusLife

Welfare@CampusLife provide practical advice and guidance to students and additionally,

staff supporting students. If you would like advice and guidance on a particular welfare

issue you can contact your College Information Team or contact

welfare.campuslife@swansea.ac.uk.

We work closely with staff in colleges, other support services within the university and

external partners such as the Police and Public Health Wales to ensure that students

receive the best support when they are experiencing welfare issues whilst studying.

We also offer online advice and guidance for students. Check out our pages!

MyUni Hub

The MyUniHub team are here to help you access a wide range of University support

services and to help you resolve any queries you may have. FO more information on how

to access MyUni Hub Services see here: https://myuni.swansea.ac.uk/myunihub/.

More magazines by this user
Similar magazines