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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

Ecofeminism a possibe solution to impending famine
2016-05-12

Description: Ecofeminism Tags: Ecofeminism

Dr Inge Konik (right) is pictured with her postdoctoral supervisor, Prof Bert Olivier, Senior Research Professor at the Department of Philosophy.
Photo: Valentino Ndaba

In view of the environmental and social problems faced in South Africa today, researchers such as Dr Inge Konik are hard at work mapping these issues and seeking long-term solutions. Dr Konik,  a lecturer in the Department of Journalism, Media and Philosophy at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) shared her views in a presentation on 6 May 2016. She spoke about revaluing indigenous ways of life and subsistence-focused lifeways, linking this to materialist ecological feminism, or ecofeminism for short.

Dr. Konik’s presentation, hosted by the Department of Philosophy at the Bloemfontein Campus of the University of the Free State (UFS), was entitled: “Transversal reflections on ecological feminism and ubuntu.” The research underpinning the presentation derived from Dr Konik’s doctoral thesis which was supervised by Ariel Salleh (University of Sydney) and Andrea Hurst (NMMU).

Dr Konik’s research suggests that ecofeminism - which is a convergence between environmentalism and feminism - may hold the answers to the question of how we may work against environmental and social injustices. She also proposed that society look back toward subsistence communities of the past, and those currently being marginalized in our industrial societies, and linked the values evidenced in the practices of these communities to the African philosophty of ubuntu. In order to solve  complex contemporary challenges Dr Konik suggests that we combine these seemingly disparate theoretical frames - ubuntu and ecofeminism - by applying a transversal approach, which involves openness to dialogue  between traditions.

“My focus was on ecological feminism and critical theory and very specifically on South Africa, given the challeges South Africa faces - the environmental and social challenges and what kind of frameworks would be helpful,” said Dr Konik, who will officially become a postdoctoral research fellow at the department as of July 2016.

Prof Pieter Duvenage, Head of the Departement, stated that compelling research outputs are anticipated from Dr Konik as a fellow.

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