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14 June 2018 Photo Supplied
Next Chapter Green Ribbon campaign addresses mental health
Members of Next Chapter and UFS Student counselling are working together to address mental health issues.

Next Chapter, a student support group at the UFS presented the Green Ribbon campaign, pledging their support to students and providing them with assistance in coping with life events that stimulate stress and contribute negatively to their mental health. The team aims to break the stigma surrounding mental health care, and continually assist students with mental health-related issues that they struggle with daily.

The Green Ribbon represents mental health awareness, which is a pressing matter for students and is the type of support students need in a stressful university environment. The campaign focuses on teaching students how to cope with life events that stimulate stress, and contribute negatively to their mental health.
 
A discussion by Dr Ancel George: practising clinical psychologist and lecturer from the UFS Department of Psychology, and Dr Mellissa Barnaschone: Director of UFS Student Counselling, took place, where talks were prominent about creating an inclusive environment for UFS students.

The panel shared a few tips on how students should work towards managing stress, and motivated them for the main mid-year examinations.
 
The follow-up Exam Cram Workshop, presented by Nadia Cloete and Lize Wolmarans, that combined time and stress management, took place on 2 June 2018, and saw students receiving advice on how to approach various issues during the examination period.
 
Mental health awareness does not end with the campaign and Next Chapter’s slogan “Your story continues” encourages students to regularly wear and commemorate the green ribbon in support of continual mental healthcare.
 
Should you have any enquiries or input for the ongoing campaign, contact the Next Chapter team on ufsnextchapter@gmail.com, or further email Tshepang Mahlatsi, founder of Next Chapter on tshepangmahlatsi767@gmail.com

News Archive

Emily Matabane transforms perceptions of the deaf community
2014-09-22

 

Emily Matabane

September is International Deaf Awareness Month and Emily Matabane – a lecturer at our Department of Sign Language – let us into the world of the deaf. A world she herself lives in.

Through the aid of Tshisikhawe Dzivhani, an interpreter, Matabane shared her experiences with us in a question and answer (Q & A) session.

Q: Tell us about your career as a lecturer in Sign Language.

A: I started working at the university as a Sign Language lecturer in 2000. I have a lot of deaf and hard of hearing people in my family and I also went to a deaf school. My mother is hard hearing and after graduation I taught her sign language. This made me want to teach other people sign language, who in turn will teach more people as well.

Q: What are common misconceptions about the deaf community?

A: Hearing people will often think you are stupid if you are deaf. But in fact we can still understand people – for instance, if they write down what they want to say when we don’t have an interpreter with us.

People also thought I couldn’t drive or buy a car because I am deaf – while I actually had a valid driver’s license. When I wanted to get a loan at the bank to buy my car, they wanted a doctor’s letter to prove that I’m allowed to drive, even though I have a license. Eventually, I did get the loan and I did buy the car!

Q: How can hearing people support the deaf community?

A: People can learn sign language. That is what I wanted to achieve when coming to university as a Sign Language lecturer. Hearing students who will become psychologists, teachers and social workers will be able to work with deaf people and perhaps teach others sign language too. Deaf people simply need more people to socialise with them.

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