East Sussex College is to host virtual activities to support staff and student wellbeing this Stress Awareness Month.

East Sussex College has turned to existing staff and some of its successful alumni, who will be sharing wellbeing tips and advice to staff, current and potential students throughout the month.

This comes in the form of online blogs, workshops and classes, looking at wellbeing, education and lifestyle, to enable students to make informed choices that impact their daily life. 

Wellbeing has always been a priority at East Sussex College, moreso since the COVID-19 pandemic and under the new leadership of Principal and CEO Rebecca Conroy. 

Now, East Sussex College is using Stress Awareness Month to allow staff and students – present and future – the chance to reset and refocus.

This comes at a time when TES reports a surge in anxiety among college support staff, with over 80% feeling anxious in lockdown. Statistics like these show how vital it is for support events.

Regular blogs will be shared throughout the month, culminating in a range of virtual activities, including free virtual yoga sessions, in the last week of April. The college Wellbeing team will host an instant messaging service for current students to answer any concerns.

Alumni will share exclusive blogs, including a holistic approach to happiness from ESC Degree student Joanne Wilkinson. Award-winning beauty therapist and ESC alumni, Rebecca West, will share tips for working under pressure and the importance of staying focused on our goals.

Plus, thanks to the support of local businesses, including Butterfly You Beauty in BexhillCade Street Nursery in Heathfield, and Chalk Farm Nurseries in Eastbourne, blogs on beauty and gardening will provide expert advice, alongside some fantastic discounts and giveaways, including two family tickets to the Blue Reef Aquarium in Hastings

Stress is a significant factor in mental health problems, including anxiety and depression. It is also linked to a number of physical health problems. As individuals, we need to address our stress, learn coping techniques and take steps to ease the stress in our lives. The college Stress Awareness programme features stress busting-tips, expert advice, and fun activities to try out. What’s more, the techniques shared can be used instantly, or referred to again, whenever those moments of stress return. 

Rebecca Conroy, Principal and CEO, says, “The events of the past year turned all of our lives upside down – often in many ways. Coping with such a lot of change and uncertainty has been challenging for all of us. Many of our students have been isolated, have missed out on attending college and mixing with their friends.

“They have missed out on activities, enrichments and placements and many assessments and exams have been disrupted. We have been determined to offer enhanced wellbeing support, in a virtual capacity, to our entire college community and the towns in which we serve. I am really proud of our work during lockdown and the activities and partnerships we created to benefit people in East Sussex.

“We are equally as pleased to deliver these events this month, to equip people with the tools to address any areas of stress and make positive changes to their lifestyle, as we adjust to life almost as we used to know it!”

College Stress Awareness Month blogs and activities can be found at www.escg.ac.uk and by following @WeAreESCG on social media.