The recent suicide of a student at Aberystwyth univeristy prompted an initial survey of students in Bournemouth and Southampton. Previously, there had been a dispute at a university where an autistic man was banned from accessing peer support meetings on campus after he had visited their Faith and Reflection Centre. Leading to his ban, the man had enquired about wellbeing support for an international student who had disclosed suicidal thoughts. There is a need to complement campus provided wellbeing services with other forms of support off campus and accessible to international students.
Two students from Hong Kong and one from PRC have been asked who they would turn to first if they were experiencing a mental health crisis or having suicidal thoughts. All three said they would go to a friend or family member first. Two (the third was not specifically asked) would be unlikely to access wellbeing services. All three confirmed they were made aware of wellbeing services provided by their respective unis. These are very preliminary findings and there is need to conduct a more thorough survey to establish what form off campus support should take.
Prior to conducting the survey we would like you to email us your thoughts and suggestions for survey questions.