The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has dramatically impacted students’ day-to-day lives and many will be facing new challenges to their mental health.
In response, the OfS has made up to £3 million available for Student Minds to lead the development of a new targeted programme of support.
The programme is designed to complement the mental health support already in place through universities, colleges and the NHS – filling potential gaps in provision and ensuring that all students have access to support they need.
New online platform
With this funding, Student Minds will create a new online platform called Student Space.
Providing both preventative support and immediate interventions, Student Space seeks to limit the mental health impact of the pandemic on students and deliver high quality support where it is most needed – for example, for those who have experienced distress or trauma resulting from the pandemic. It will:
- offer immediate help for students in distress through therapeutic interventions
- provide educational resources to help students manage stress and maintain good mental health and wellbeing
- curate a range of quality-assured online resources, such as guidance, apps, peer support platforms, and volunteering opportunities.
The final content of the programme is being developed in response to emerging student need, with services based on ongoing evaluation and assessment. This ongoing needs analysis will seek to understand the impact of coronavirus on different student groups, so that services and resources will be inclusive and targeted to the needs of the most vulnerable students.
The platform will be available to all 2.3 million students from OfS-registered providers in England and from registered Welsh institutions.
The programme will run for six months, from July to December 2020. In addition, Student Minds plan for many of the resources to be useful well beyond the initial six-month period.
Read more about the funding