Massey University’s Student Health is in the final stages of launching a centre on the Wellington campus that will focus on promoting and improving student wellbeing.
The centre, dubbed the ‘wellbeing hub’ has taken over the Bennett’s bookshop space opposite the library and will boast sensory features like coloured lighting, calming music and custom furnishings.
Campus Operations Manager Leanne Radovanovich says the hub will also host a range of workshops on stress management, anxiety, transitioning, meditation and more.
“Plus there’ll be time during the day where it will be just chill, and it’s just a place to get students to be calm; there’ll be beanbags, lot of cushions, there’ll be colouring and mindful things that people can actually do – have some playdough, whatever!”
The opening of the wellbeing hub is part of Student Health’s health promotion strategy, which involves working towards erasing the stigma behind mental health.
“The premise is that mental health isn’t embarrassing; it’s a deliberate move to have it down in the main foyer so that people can just pop in and it’s not seen as a ‘hide in the corner’ type of thing,” said Radovanovich.
Student Health is hopeful that the wellness hub will be open in the next few weeks and are waiting on final lighting to be installed as well as custom furnishings to be created.
“[It] will be a prototype, we’re not rushed in opening it because we want to make sure it’s got everything that we need in there. The hope is that we’ll then move onto the other two campuses.”
Wellness Services Manager Terry Rivers thinks the hub will be “a great focal point for students.”
Because of the other two campuses' different layout, Rivers says they haven’t yet considered where a similar wellness centre might work.
“But I would certainly hope that we can explore that in the future; but in the meantime Wellington students get to be the recipients of a new space and hopefully the positivity that comes out of it will help us do something equally as positive on the other two campuses.”
Student Health currently supports students by offering subsidised GP visits, free counselling, online self-help resources and more.
For more information on Student Health or to enrol, visit the clinic on the third floor of Block 9 or call 04 979 3030 (extn 63030).