Staff and student wellbeing

Looking after your wellbeing is always important, but never more so than during the current COVID-19 outbreak which is impacting on countries around the world. It’s a worrying time and an enormous change to all our lives and so it’s perfectly natural to go through a wide range of emotions.

We’ve created this web section, to help you find the support and information you need – whether you are a student or member of staff. The resources, including new materials, will also be available on their relevant website sections. Check back often to find new information which we hope will be of use to you. 

Remember, we are all one University of Exeter community and are here to support one another.

We’d love to hear from you - if you have suggestions for further content, please contact studentcomms@exeter.ac.uk.

What’s new 

Over the coming weeks we will be sharing a growing range of resources designed to support your wellbeing and your work whether you are a student or a member of staff. 

New this week in 'coping with lockdown' is our top 10 tips for working remotely - check it out for advice on managing your workload from home.

Silvercloud offers secure, 24/7 access to online cognitive behavioural therapy programmes and now there's a new section based around COVID-19. It's packed full of useful ideas and tools for managing the stress and uncertainty affecting us all right now and you can find out more here.

Time to Talk bookable appointments are now available for Penryn students to discuss everything from course work, exam stress, relationship issues or anything else that is on your mind. 

Check out the University’s Arts and Culture website – we have heaps of artist talks, interviews, blogs, online galleries and even a Covid-19 arts commissioning programme, Hyperlocal. 

Our Mental Health team have set up an online meeting every Wednesday from 14:30 – 15:30 (running until 15th July) for students still living in their student accommodation in and around Exeter. The meeting offers a safe and informal space to share experiences and top tips for managing during lockdown, and also an opportunity to give and receive support. To join, please email wellbeing@exeter.ac.uk and they will then forward a Microsoft Teams meeting link. 

The COVID-19 outbreak has brought about a period of change and uncertainty that most of us have never experienced before.

Our wellbeing services are still open for business online and you can find out more about how to access their support here:

Resources:

Staff and students have shared their tips, advice and strategies on how to boost wellbeing during the current situation.

Blogs 

Webinars and videos  

Silvercloud - COVID-19

Silvercloud offers secure, 24/7 access to online cognitive behavioural therapy programmes and now there's a new section based around COVID-19. It's packed full of useful ideas and tools for managing the stress and uncertainty affecting us all right now. Silvercloud has already had positive feedback from student users and improved outcomes for those with depression, anxiety and stress. Learn more and sign-up.

Chaplaincy

The Multifaith Chaplaincy team is available for online and telephone appointments by contacting chaplaincy@exeter.ac.uk or by calling Ramona, Multifaith Chaplaincy Coordinator, on 07557 064976, to arrange an online appointment.

Our Connections Café is also running via Zoom on Tuesdays and Fridays 11am – 1pm until the end of the exam period (Friday 12th June). Connections Café is open to anyone, students and staff, to drop in online and talk to members of the Multifaith Chaplaincy team, either related to the theme of each session or about anything else you might like to discuss. Please visit our Facebook page for the themes of each Connections Café online, and visit our website page for more details about chaplaincy during lockdown, and to access faith and worldview resources for our uncertain times.

Mind Over Natter series 

Mind Over Natter is a wellbeing talk series which offers students and staff tips on how they can manage their own wellbeing.  Before the campus closures because of COVID-19, we held talks on campus on issues such as worry, stress and meditation. We have included the recordings here.

Check back to catch newly recorded virtual talks and blogs as they are added:

Online resources 

As we are spending more time at home, staying active and eating well is more important than ever. Taking regular exercise will improve your fitness and is also beneficial to your mental health and wellbeing.

You can join the Facebook group for ideas on workouts, courtesy of our Sport, Health and Fitness team (available to students and staff)

Webinars and videos

Professor Andy Jones from the University of Exeter speaks about the benefits of exercise and nutrition, and how to keep healthy during lockdown

Online resources  

Living in self-isolation brings practical, as well as emotional challenges.

Below are some resources that can provide advice and support.

Webinars and videos 

Coronavirus and your wellbeing webinar – Kathy O’Connor
This webinar outlines some information and strategies to help you support your wellbeing and mental health as well as practical tips for dealing with self-isolation.

Senior Clinical Lecturer and expert in communicable diseases, Dr Bharat Pankhania talks about how to self-isolate.

Blogs 

Online resources

Tips for self-isolating with your partner
Academics from the University of Exeter working on the Shackleton Relationships Project - backed by high profile divorce lawyer Baroness Shackleton - have developed practical tips for surviving self-isolating with your partner.

Tips for working remotely 
Get some tips for managing your workload at home. 

Student Minds
Student Minds provides advice tailored to students, but which may be useful for everybody. They also provide links to external organisations that offer support, including for those with ongoing mental health difficulties or who have been the victim of xenophobia or racism. 

Every Mind Matters
The NHS's website Every Mind Matters provides simple tips and advice on how you can look after your mental wellbeing during this time - find out more on their website and get your free online personal Mind Plan. 

Mind
Mental health charity Mind has created an information hub providing information and support during these challenging times. Topics include anxiety, loneliness and grief and there is also information tailored to young people. 

Mandown Cornwall

Mandown Cornwall, which is a men's mental health support group in the county, is running Facebook Live event every Monday evening at 7pm (BST). You can find out more about Mandown here

Piperpotamus learns about coronavirus
Fourth year medicine student Annis Watts has created cute characters and a rhyming story to explain covid-19 to young children. Annis said: “Seeing on social media that people were struggling at home with their children once the UK lockdown began, I decided to create Piperpotamus as a story which could be downloaded for free to help parents explain the new coronavirus and the situation to their children.” The book is free to download here  'Piperpotamus learns about coronavirus'

Survey on the impact of school closures
Do you have school-aged children at home with you? If so, University researchers would be glad if you would fill out this survey, which is trying to give quick feedback to policymakers about the impact of the school closures.

Study Zone

You can still book 1:1 appointments through Study Zone and advisors can help with exams, assessments and dissertations. You can also find online revision and exams guides on Study Zone Digital

Students usually based in Cornwall

If you’re usually based on our Cornwall campuses the ASK, EAP, Accessibility, and Inclusive Learning services are all available digitally, as are the usual resources in Study Hub. You can find them below:

Exams

You can read all of the latest communications from your University about examinations and assessments here.

To support you, you can find all the Exams and assessments information that you’ll need on Study Zone’s website. This includes technical guidance for the exams themselves, as well as exams and revision guides, wellbeing information, and information for students who usually use a reader or scribe in exams.

For students usually based in Cornwall, you can also access exam tips on the Study Hub web pages and these are being updated regularly so please check back.‌

For tips on managing exam nerves take a look at Student Minds guide to tackling exam stress. We've also put together our 6 top tips to reduce exam and revision stress below. 

Library Services

Remember your library services are open!  

Don’t forget you can still access resources and support from your library online. Find resources to support your study via the library website 

You can ask a question using the live chat feature, which pops up on the web page. We’re also working with publishing partners to open up access to digital resources during the Coronavirus outbreak and you can find out more here.

Researcher Development (PGR)

Our Researcher Development team is still continuing their online training programme for Postgraduate Researcher Students (PGRs) and are also putting in place additional support. Our online training provision is here to help PGRs with writing, project management, communicating your research via different mediums and on building networks. A full list of the courses coming up can be found on our website.

Webinars and videos  

How am I so productive – University of Exeter student Ruby Granger shares her suggestions.

We are proud of how the University of Exeter community has risen to the challenge of the past few weeks. We recognise that not everyone is in a position to volunteer within their community. However, we wanted to bring you some positivity at this challenging time by sharing some of the stories from across our University.

If you are helping others at the moment – however that might be, please let us know using the form below. We’d also like to hear about your own lockdown journey! 

Contribution to our Community

If you would like to share your contributions or volunteering work, please provide us with a short paragraph and, if possible, a photograph we could use on the webpages and our social media over the coming weeks. 

If you have funny, inspiring or thought-provoking lockdown stories to share, please email studentcomms@exeter.ac.uk

Our stories

Your Students’ Guild (for students usually Exeter-based) and Students’ Union for those usually in Cornwall are there to offer you support. 

Students’ Guild 

The Students’ Guild has lots of information available on its dedicated coronavirus pages, including advice and information about social distancing. You can also still contact the advice service online.

PGR student? Check out the specific information available for you here.  

Some of the student societies are creating online activities and you can find out more here.  

Students’ Union 

The Students’ Union is running a campaign across its social media channels under the hashtag #isolationnotisolated. You can still access the Students' Union Advice Service online from 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday, via email: advice@thesu.org.uk You can also find their specific coronavirus information which is full of lots of information and is available here. 

Remember too that the Student Support Services are still available online.  

External organisations

Every Mind Matters – NHS service providing free tips and advice to support your mental health 

Mind Coronavirus and your wellbeing

Samaritans provide a confidential listening and support service where you are able to talk through your troubles and concerns in a safe and non-judgmental space. You can:
Call: 116 123
Text: 07725  909 090
Email: jo@samaritans.org

Student Minds
Student Minds provides advice tailored to students, but which may be useful for everybody. They also provide links to external organisations that offer support, including for those with ongoing mental health difficulties or who have been the victim of xenophobia or racism. 

Papyrus provides confidential help and advice around mental health and suicide to young people and anyone worried about a young person. Their opening hours are 10am-10pm weekdays, 2pm-10pm weekends and 2pm-5pm on Bank Holidays. You can:
Call: 0800 068 41 41
Text: 07786 209 697
Email: pat@papyrus-uk.org

Isolation doesn’t have to mean isolated: find out which university events and activities you can take part in virtually.  Have an event or activity taking place online? Get in touch with studentcomms@exeter.ac.uk or send your pictures to socialmedia@exeter.ac.uk

In Occupational Health our aim is to support our colleagues and we want to reassure you that during these difficult times support, guidance and advice from us is still available from the OH Team. We have modified our way of working to accommodate the current situation and are able to undertake management referrals, health surveillance and provide advice, information and guidance via phone and Teams video and audio calls.  Managers can arrange a management referral via the HR Adviser Team who will download the management referral form and facilitate the referral.

For any work-related health matters which require advice about health and wellbeing at work a manager or member of staff can email to our confidential Occupational Health inbox will be replied to by one of the Advisers. This box is checked regularly throughout the day and the team endeavour to provide a reply by the next working day at the latest. If you have a disability and require additional support or have a query you can contact the staff Disability Adviser. We will be able to provide signposting and advice regarding working from home and self-isolating.

Our OH website provides a central source for resources, guidance and advice regarding health and work including links to external and internal information, how to manage long-term conditions while working from home, and what to do if you experience problems.

Please also remember that you can access further assistance from Pro-Counselling which is available 24/7 for telephone counselling via the online portal, as well as offering a range of well-being resources and guides.

Students

Exeter 

Our Wellbeing teams are still available to support you during these uncertain and challenging times. We can offer remote appointments via telephone or online, and will do whatever we can to help you through this unusual period. 

If you are a student usually based on our Exeter campuses, you can email wellbeing@exeter.ac.uk to request support or call Wellbeing Services on +44 (0) 1392 724381 and leave a voicemail.

You can reach our AccessAbility team at accessability@exeter.ac.uk or by leaving a voicemail at +44 (0) 1392 723880.

The Chaplaincy team is still available to support you online or on the phone. Find out more on their webpages.

Cornwall

If you are a student usually based on our Cornwall campuses you can contact Living Support as follows:

The Compass offers students help and advice on any aspect of university life, whether you have a quick query or require specialist support. If you’re not sure where to find the answer to your question, this is a good place to start:

Nightline 

  • Nightline is a confidential listening and information service run by students for students from 8pm– 8am during term time.
    Skype: exeterstudentnightline
    Email: info@exeternightline.ac.uk
    Instant messaging service available all over the world is available on their website

Staff

Occupational Health is here to provide you with advice and guidance on the impact of work on health and health on work.

The Chaplaincy team is still available to support you online or on the phone. Find out more on their webpages

External information

The NHS's website Every Mind Matters provides simple tips and advice on how you can look after your mental wellbeing during this time - find out more on their website and get your free online personal Mind Plan. 

Cornwall Council has provided a toolkit for residents, which you can access here. It is aimed at supporting you and your community during lockdown and has a range of information and contact details. 

If you are in the Falmouth area, you might want to look at the Helpfal.com website, which has a range of information designed to help you during these times.