Latest News Archive

Please select Category, Year, and then Month to display items
Years
2017 2018 2019 2020
Previous Archive
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

Researcher transforms despair into diamonds
2016-01-18

PhD candidate, Lerato Machetela and some members of the group Diamonds in the Rough having some fun between rehearsals.

Awash in hopelessness, substance abuse, violence, and sexual promiscuity. This is the lived reality of the youth in Jagersfontein. But now Lerato Machetela is using her research to change it.

As a PhD candidate in Trauma, Forgiveness, and Reconciliation Studies at the University of the Free State (UFS), Machetela assembled a group of 14 young men – ranging between the ages of 9 and 18 – who call themselves Jagersfontein’s Diamonds in the Rough. Combining elements from psychology, education, and entertainment, Machetela has established a platform that grounds these young ones adrift in circumstances. By means of song and dance, these young ones have become grounded through creativity.

While discussing what it means to be free in the new South Africa, Machetela asked the group to come up with a song similar to the struggle song, ‘Nelson Mandela usi litheli ixolo’.

Jagersfontein’s Diamonds in the Rough Researcher, Lerato Machetela, combines psychology, education, and entertainment to ground local youths through creativity.

The result: He’s a teenager, but he drinks Hansa.

“This then developed into a dance routine depicting what the youth is doing with their freedom,” Machetela says. With each beat of their boots and rhythmic clap of their hands, the group illustrates the ways in which the youth has constructed – and come to understand – their daily realities. “The routine includes the expression of alcohol and drug abuse, and ends of with the importance of education.”

Through the creative expressions of Diamonds in the Rough, Machetela is able not only to explore the reality of the youth in Jagersfontein, but also to investigate intergenerational trauma. “I am looking at whether there is a relationship between these young people’s current circumstances and the experiences of their parents’ generation during the apartheid years. That is, what sort of meanings do they construct as young, black South Africans growing up in the new South Africa?”

What started off as a research project is now rippling beyond academic spheres, though. The Free State Department of Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation has taken note of this initiative. As a result, the group has already performed at the Bloem Show, International Museums Day, and Heritage Day celebrations, as well as at the Mangaung African Cultural Festival (MACUFE).  

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept