The Red Box Project is a charity which was founded in 2017 with the aim to give young people free sanitary products due to them missing days off school because they couldn’t afford the products they needed during their period. The charity contacted secondary schools in their local area and funded boxes of menstrual products because teachers said it was ‘much needed’. After recognising that these boxes were essential in schools up and down the county.
The Students’ Union have 2 boxes of products to restock when needed. Evidence shows that the average cost of a period on the UK is over £500 a year and on average £40 a month. With the boxes here, it should relieve financial pressure and stress for students.
The products will be in the Engine Shed and there is more stock available when products are running low. If you notice the boxes need refilling, please ask one of your Sabbatical team.
At the Students’ Union and University, safety is paramount. Giving consent should be clear and both parties need to be involved in making the decision. To raise awareness of what can be an extremely distressing topic, the Students’ Union are joining members of the University support services to educate students about consent. Due to the Covid-19 outbreak, meetings have been postponed until further notice.
Every year, hundreds of people experience spiking, this is when alcohol or drugs is added to someone’s drink without their permission or without them knowing. Symptoms people will experience if they have been spiked are:
• lowered concentration
• loss of balance
• memory loss
• nausea and vomiting and unconsciousness
During Freshers week Katy (VP Welfare), Gemma (President), the University’s security and Police Team were at Platform giving out advice to students about the safe route home and drink stoppers to put on top of your drink to stop other people putting other drink or drugs in it.
Sport and society pledge cards and Mental Health
This year I have introduced pledge cards for sports clubs and societies whereby the groups come up with 3 or 4 pledges to improve wellbeing. Pledges include joining in with a campaign to hosting sober socials. To get the name of a ‘very good’ club, the teams need to hold 1 pledge event which is either holding a charity event or coming up with their own campaign.
This year we have had some great work from different student groups. Some have fundraised over £1,000 for different charities, others have gone in to their local community and volunteered their time. It is really good to see groups going the extra mile and embedding welfare in to their activity.
Sexual Health Awareness Day
Did you know that in Northampton there are sexual health services providing support for students? Staff from Sexual Health Outreach Team provide information on:
• Offering chlamydia testing
• Free condoms
• Information about local services
• How to have healthy relationships
Their aim of this is also to raise awareness of the stigma that is there with sexual health. There are variety of clinics and our campus doctors surgery to treat patients when necessary. You can find them in the Students’ Union the 1st Tuesday and 3rd Wednesday of each month.
University Mental Health Day
On Thursday 5th March, Katy and Hollie joined the University with their University Mental Health Day activities. They had a stall about the sports and societies on offer to try and tackle loneliness and isolation amongst students. Katy and Hollie also had a ‘pledge tree’ where students and staff came and wrote pledges on apples about how they practise self-care.
For more about self-care, read Katy’s blog which has some self-care tips: https://northamptonunion.com/news/article/katyjan1
For more information on how you can join a sports club or society group: https://northamptonunion.com/get-involved/sports-and-societies