In August 2020, with funding from the Office for Students and Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, at Student Minds, we launched Student Space, a website designed to complement existing support services and to make it easier for students to find the support they need during the pandemic.
We know that the pandemic has had a big impact on student and university communities. In our latest research, we found that 74% of students reported that Covid-19 has had a negative impact on their mental health and wellbeing. We also know that the mental health and wellbeing impacts of the pandemic will outlast the pandemic itself. That’s why we’re committed to ensuring that students across England and Wales continue to get the support they need.
We are pleased to share with students, the university community and our partners that the Office for Students and the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales have agreed to extend their funding for Student Space up until the end of 2021 in the first instance. Colleagues across the sector can be assured that the platform will be available to support the transition into the 21/22 academic year and we continue to plan for the role this intervention plays in the long term.
Our support offer at Student Space is designed to be agile and responsive to the pandemic and students’ needs, so whilst the exact nature of the ongoing support package will continue to evolve in collaboration with our partners and funders, we strongly encourage stakeholders across higher education and mental health to continue signposting to and utilising Student Space, recognising the ongoing impact of the pandemic on student mental health and wellbeing, as well as the value of a sector-wide approach.
Colleagues in universities, students’ unions, schools, colleges, government, the NHS and beyond can all play a role in supporting recent, current and future university students and create HE communities that are positive environments for individuals to thrive.
As we all prepare for the next academic year, we are here to support you with our new dedicated area to help students as they prepare for university.