Activate Learning celebrates World Mental Health Day 2023

On 10 October each year, World Mental Health Day is acknowledged and celebrated worldwide. 

World Mental Health Day 2023

World Mental Health Day aims to raise awareness of mental health concerns and to encourage people to work together to improve mental health support for everyone.  

It’s a day to talk freely about mental health and utilise the support around you.

The theme of World Mental Health Day 2023, set by the World Federation for Mental Health, is: Mental health is a universal human right.

Back in May 2023, we launched our Mental Health Strategy, Mental Health Matters Here, which aims to support the mental health and wellbeing of everyone at Activate Learning. In addition, we have also created anxiety and stress courses for students too.   

World Mental Health Day Student Message

To mark World Mental Health Day, Gary Headland, CEO of Activate Learning has recorded a message for all students.

Join in with Tea and Talk activities

Tea & Talk campaign image

We are hosting a number of events for staff and students across our campuses, pop along to one our drop in sessions below on Tuesday 10 October for a cuppa and a cake and to meet our Mental Health First Aiders:

  • Banbury and Bicester College: Main Hall, from 1-4pm (for students and staff).
  • Bracknell and Wokingham College: Recharge, from 8-8.45am and 10.30-11.15am (for students and staff). Stepping Stones Recovery College will also be there to promote wellbeing courses.
  • City of Oxford College and University Centre, Oxford city-centre campus: Recharge at 12.45-1.15pm (for students and staff).
  • City of Oxford College and University Centre, Technology campus in Blackbird Leys: Free fruit and positivity noticeboard on Tuesday 10 October, 10.30-11am. Coffee morning for staff and students on Wednesday 11 October (details to follow).
  • Merrist Wood College and University Centre: The Harris Centre, from 10-11am (for students and staff). This will be followed by a wellness walk and tasty treats, from 12.30-1.30pm, departing from outside the Harris Centre.

Supporting your mental wellbeing and studies at college 

There may be times at college where you feel you may benefit from some additional support.  

When we look after our mental health and wellbeing, we ensure that we can focus on and make the most of our studies and relationships. 

To help you thrive in your personal life and at college, we offer lots of support services at college.

Your wellbeing and education are important to us. So, if you find yourself struggling, you can access:  

World Mental Health Day 2022 - Activate Learning - College support services

Who can I talk to at college about my mental health? 

At each Activate Learning college, our dedicated Student Support and Safeguarding team are here to help with any of your mental health or wellbeing concerns.  

We want everyone to feel safe and supported. Student Support can help you with your mental health and wellbeing, offering services including:  

College nurse (Oxfordshire campuses only)  

The college nurse service covers: 

  • Contraception 
  • Sexual health and guidance 
  • Stop smoking 
  • Mental health 
  • Relationship advice and guidance 
  • Healthy eating 


A free and confidential counselling service is available at all students at Activate Learning.  

Mental health support   

Whatever your mental health concern, we have a support package available to help you. 

You can contact Student Support and the Safeguarding team by visiting them on campus, calling 01865 550 041 or emailing safe@activatelearning.ac.uk.  

If you need support with your mental health outside of college hours, you can contact: 

  • Samaritans: 116 123 
  • Child Line: 0800 1111 
  • Police: 101 
  • Emergency Services: 999 

Ways you can boost your mental health and wellbeing 

There are lots of ways you can boost your mental health and wellbeing outside of our support services at college.  

On World Mental Health Day 2023, you could:  

Clubs and activities at college 

At each Activate Learning college, our Student Enrichment and Engagement team hosts a wealth of clubs and activities.  

These clubs are the perfect opportunity to meet new and like-minded people and to improve your mental health. 

Clubs on offer across Activate Learning include:

  • Dungeons & Dragons
  • Photography
  • Football
  • Board games
  • Students’ Union
  • Student Reps
  • Philosophy or theories
  • Duke of Edinburgh Award
  • Christian Union

You can learn more about student clubs, events throughout the year and activities at your campus by contacting your local Student Enrichment Officer.

If you’d like to start a new club, your Student Enrichment Officer would be more than happy to support this!

World Mental Health Day 2022 - Activate Learning - Learning Environments

Utilising our Learning Environments at college and online 

Our Learning Environments offer in-person and digital services for all students.  They offer many great resources to boost your mental health in light of World Mental Health Day 2023!

They are a great place for quiet study and research. You can borrow books, read magazines, use the computers and more!    

Activate Learning Online (ALO) is also a great resource, you can find out more about Learning Environments on ALO 

On ALO, you can learn more about:  

Developing your mental fitness with Fika 

We are thrilled to partner with Fika to provide learners with access to their mental fitness skills development platform.  

Fika, named after a Swedish concept, is a state of mind, an attitude and an important part of Swedish culture. Many Swedes consider that it is almost essential to make time for fika every day. It means taking time out for self-care, making time for your emotions and the emotions of others. 

Using the Fika app, learners can develop their mental fitness skills to improve core skills and increase confidence and resilience to deal with the challenges that life brings, at their own time and pace. 

You can access the Fika app and website for free. Firstly, when signing up, search for Activate Learning in the institution list. Secondly, enter your college email and password. Lastly, verify your account via the activation email.

Other World Mental Health Day 2023 resources 

Here are some other World Mental Health Day 2023 resources that you may find useful:

We hope you have found this content useful on World Mental Health Day 2023. There’s lots going on across our campuses!

If you’d like to get involved in the conversation, join us via the Activate Learning social media channels using the hashtags: #WorldMentalHealthDay, #WMHD and #PinItForMentalHealth