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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

UFS Paralympic athlete Louzanne ready for Rio
2016-09-12

Description: Louzanne ready for Rio Tags: Louzanne ready for Rio

Rufus Botha (coach, left), Louzanne Coetzee,
and her guide Khothatso Mokone during a training
session for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.
Photo: Johan Roux

“Coetzee is someone with a lot of perseverance. She is becoming a world-class athlete with the help of her guide, Khothatso Mokone.” These were the words from Rufus Botha, the coach of 23-year-old Louzanne Coetzee.

Coetzee, who works at the Institute for Reconciliation and Social Justice at the University of the Free State (UFS), said that the 2016 Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro was never a big dream for her, because she never thought she was good enough to make it, but God had a different plan for her life.

Louzanne and her formidable team

Coetzee said that she still struggles to come to terms with the fact that she is competing at the Paralympics and experiences a rollercoaster of emotions. “I am excited, nervous, and confused all at the same time.”

According to Botha, who has been her coach for the past four years, Coetzee and her guide have such a unique rhythm and work together well. “After Mokone, also a former Kovsie, stepped into the picture, everything just escalated.”

The 2016 Paralympics and beyond

“Coetzee is someone with a lot of
perseverance and is becoming a
world-class athlete.”


“Making the Paralympic team is already a bonus. The next target we are aiming for, is for her to reach the finals in the 1500 m,” Botha said.

Coetzee and Mokone were included in the South African team to participate in Rio from 7 to 18 September 2016. Her heat takes place on 15 September 2016 and the finals of the 1500 m on 17 September 2016.

Coetzee’s main goal after the Paralympics is the World ParaAthletics Championships in London 2017.

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