Wellbeing - Looking after ourselves and our community
We're here to support you with information and resources to help you stay motivated, set goals and achieve.
Our Future U team are available to help and support you through your time with us at UCEN Manchester, whether you just need some good advice, an understanding ear, or a confidential place to get something off your chest.
We can also help you find expert advice for your specific situation, and connect you with those people most qualified to support your needs. You can call us on 03333 222 444 or email us here.
If you need urgent support
If you need immediate support with your mental health in order to stay safe, you can call 999 and request an ambulance or go straight to A&E. You can also call NHS 111 or request an emergency GP appointment.
Samaritans and Shout can support you during a mental health crisis; Young Minds and The Mix also offer 24-hour crisis support if you are under 25.
- Samaritans 24-hour crisis helpline: 116 123
- Shout 24-hour crisis support via text (not phone calls): text SHOUT to 85258
- Young Minds 24-hour crisis messenger (under 25s): text YM to 85258
- The Mix 24-hour crisis texting service (under 25s): text THEMIX to 85258
In some areas of England, you can find a crisis house. This is a place to stay for a short time when you are in a mental health crisis and feel you would be safer staying away from home. Visit the Mind website to start looking for one in your area.
Below you’ll also find our useful list of helpful contacts for a wide variety of topics and issues.
Read advice and download a selection of our digital resources below including phone wallpapers, day and week planners.
Future U: Student Support Services including careers and welfare teams can still be reached remotely. Contacts are available here.
Disability support: if you have a query you can contact our team by emailing DSA@ucenmcr.tmc.ac.uk or by calling us on: 07925 149 183
Admissions: if you have a question about your application or offer please email us here.
Below you’ll also find our useful list of contacts for a wide variety of topics and issues, with emergency helplines open 24 hours a day – just in case you need them.
This list covers just some of the services and groups running in Manchester. You can also go to Hub of Hope and enter your postcode to find other support groups and services near you.
- AA 24-hour national helpline for support with concerns about drinking: 0800 9177 650
- Anxiety UK for support with an anxiety condition (Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 5.30pm): 03444 775 774
- Beat for support with and information about eating disorders (Monday to Friday 12pm to 8pm & Weekends 4pm to 8pm): 0808 801 0677 (or 0808 801 0811 for students or 0808 801 0711 for children and teens)
- CALM for mental health support for those who identify as male, aged 15-35 (daily, 5pm to midnight): 0800 58 58 58
- Cruse Bereavement Care for emotional support for anyone affected by bereavement (Monday and Friday, 9:30am to 5pm; Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 9:30am to 8pm): 0808 808 1677
- Manchester Carers Centre for emotional support and practical advice for unpaid carers (Monday to Thursday 10 to 3pm): 0161 2727 270
- Manchester Rape Crisis support for females who have experienced rape or sexual abuse (please see Safeline below if you are male) (Monday-Friday 10am to 4pm, plus 6pm to 9pm on Wednesdays and Thursdays): 0161 273 4500
- ManKind Initiative for male domestic abuse helpline (Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm): 01823 334 244
- Marie Curie for support for people with a terminal illness and their family and friends (Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm, Saturdays 11am to 5pm): 0800 090 2309
- Mind Infoline for questions relating to mental health (Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm): 0300 123 3393 or text 86463
- Mind Legal Advice Service for legal advice around your mental health (Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm): 0300 466 6463
- Mood Swings for anyone with concerns about their mood (including, but not limited to anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, psychosis) or about someone else’s mood (Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm): 0161 832 37 36
- NA helpline for people concerned about their substance use (daily, 10am to midnight): 0300 999 1212
- National Gambling Helpline support for concerns around gambling (daily, 8am to midnight) 0808 8020 133
- National Stalking Helpline advice and information for anyone currently or previously affected by stalking or harassment (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 9:30am to 4pm; Wednesday 1pm to 4pm): 0808 802 0300
- National Association for People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC) helpline to talk about your experience of abuse in childhood and how it affects you (Monday to Thursday 10am to 9pm, Friday 10am to 6pm): 0808 801 0331 NSPCC 24-hour helpline for adults concerned about a child: 0808 800 5000
- Papyrus for under 35-year olds experiencing thoughts of suicide, or if you are concerned about someone who is (Monday to Friday 9am to 10pm & Saturday and Sunday 2pm – 10pm): call 0800 068 4141 or text 07786 209697
- Prisoners’ Families Helpline offers practical and emotional support, information and advice to families of people who have been imprisoned (Monday to Friday 9am to 8pm, weekends 10am to 3pm): 0808 808 2003
- Refuge for domestic violence and abuse 24-hour helpline: 0808 200 0247
- Rethink offer practical advice for people with mental health conditions on treatment and therapy, debt, benefits, court, the police and your rights (Monday to Friday 10am to 2pm): 0300 5000 927
- Safe Spots charity supporting females experiencing domestic abuse (also offer support in-person): 07873 889 637
- Sane for anyone affected by a mental health problem or who is concerned about someone who is (daily, 4:30pm to 10:30pm): 0300 304 7000
- Silverline 24-hour support line for over 55s: 0800 470 80 90 Support Line offers emotional support with any issue (opening hours vary, phone up to check): 01708 765200
- Safeline support for males who have experienced sexual assault or rape (Monday/Wednesday/Friday 9am to 5pm; Tuesday/Thursday 8am to 8pm; Saturday 10am to 2pm): 0808 800 5005
- Switchboard help and support for those who identify as LGBT+ (daily, 10am to 10pm): 0300 330 0630
- The Mix helpline (not crisis support – see above for crisis service) for under 25s (4pm to 11pm daily): 0808 808 4994
- The Sanctuary available every night 6pm to 1am if you are struggling to cope: 0300 003 7029
- Young Minds helpline offering support to parents (Monday to Friday 9:30am to 4pm): 0808 802 5544
Careers advice and planning
Our careers and welfare team can help you with specific careers advice and support you on the path to achieving your dream job, but if you’d like to get started yourself, try the following websites for research and planning:
Stress is a natural feeling, designed to help you cope in challenging situations. In small amounts, it’s good, because it pushes you to work hard and do your best, including in exams.
Short periods of stress are normal, and can often be resolved by something as simple as completing a task or by talking to others and taking time to relax.
- If you feel overwhelmed with your workload or studies make a to-do list and identify the most important tasks you need to achieve, complete these and re-access how you feel, often the thought of everything is much worse than the reality.
- Ensure you’re still striking a balance, take breaks, socialise, relax with a cup of tea, keep hydrated, exercise and ensure you still prioritise sleep.
- Try not to worry about the future or compare yourself with others. Take a break and do something creative, focusing on something that you enjoy can help you re-energise .
- Try breathing exercises to help you relax.
- Develop or reach out to your support network whether this be to friends, family, tutors or professionals.
You can also speak to our Careers and Welfare team, part of our wider Future U Student Support Services offer by emailing us here.
How to look after your whole self
Tips to look after your whole self
It is normal to feel stress and worry about your situation and the changes it has had on your life. It is important to take action to help reduce the potential impacts on your general health and wellbeing. Below are tips on how to support yourself during this period.
Set up health daily routines:
A regular routine can help reduce boredom and help you create a sense of normality.
- Maintain regular mealtimes with a focus on a healthy and balanced diet
- Maintain a regular sleep schedule
- Keep up to date with normal chores around the house
- If you can study from home try stick to your normal study times
- If you have spare time consider doing tasks that will help you feel a sense of achievement.
- Exercise is a proven way to reduce the effects of stress.
- Look for workout options, there are loads of apps, instagram feeds and youtube workouts available that are great free resources and often require little or no equipment.
- Reach out to people you trust like friends and family via phone, text, email and video chat
- Consider creating group chats for any groups you may not see often so you can all keep up to date with each other
- It’s important to share how you feel and try linking with those in a similar situation.
Take time to relax
- Plan activities that help you feel calm or safe
- Try to get fresh air or spend time outside as much as you can.
Check your thoughts and feelings:
It’s normal to feel overwhelmed or stressed. It’s important to remind yourself that this will pass. Create a plan of things you could do or say to yourself during this time.
Music to motivate you
Explore our playlists on Spotify
Total concentration - purely instrumental
Relaxed study - chilled out music with lyrics
Keeping active - music to move to
Pride - party with pride
Freshers' Fun - fun from home
Busy srtudy periods can mean we have an increased amount of screen time, and even during our breaks we might checking our phone or playing on an iPad. Podcasts, on the other hand, provide a fantastic alternative to the TV, enabling you to unwind, relax and give your eyes a rest from the glare!
Whether you want to learn something new or find your happy place, we’ve compiled a list of podcasts that we think you’ll love:
Fearne Cotton chats with inspiring individuals who have either made changes in their own lives or who help people every day to find a different way of looking at life. - Listen Here
TED Talks Daily
Every weekday you can hear thought-provoking ideas on every subject imaginable from the world’s leading thinkers and doers. This podcast can help you change your perspectives, ignite your curiosity and learn something new. - Listen Here
Cole Cuchna gives an in-depth examination on one pivotal figure in the music industry and their music, including Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly and Tyler, the Creator’s Flower Boy. - Listen Here
Who The Hell Is Hamish
A story of how one man from Sydney duped people from across the world, swindling them out of tens of millions of dollars and evading justice for decades. How did he manage to evade the authorities for so long and what did he do with the money? - Listen Here
Serial – Season 1
In 1999, Hae Min Lee, a popular high-school senior, disappears after school. Detectives arrest her ex-boyfriend but he says he’s innocent - though he can't exactly remember what he was doing on that particular afternoon. But someone can. A classmate at Woodlawn High School says she knows where he was. The trouble is, she’s nowhere to be found. - Listen here
That Peter Crouch Podcast
Peter Crouch, Tom Fordyce and Chris Stark give an insider’s perspective of life as a Premier League footballer with some banter thrown in for good measure. - Listen Here
Stuff You Should Know
Why not take some time to learn something new and interesting. If you’ve ever wanted to understand how dog training works or you want to know what Cockney Rhyming Slang actually is, this is the perfect podcast for you. - Listen Here
How to prepare for an online interview or audition
Get your tech right. It’s worth doing a trial video call with someone, this will allow you to adjust your tech as needed as well as help you get used to what it’s like if this isn’t something you’ve done before. Check the lighting, picture quality, and sound. Resolving any issues ahead of the call will help eliminate excess stress and ensure you’re presenting yourself at your best
Eliminate distractions and check your location. If you have the option try to find a quiet place for the call, or use a headset to cancel out background noise if feasible. If you live with other people, let them know that you’ll be on a video call so they can monitor their behaviour accordingly. If you’re worried about not being able to find an appropriate place, just let the tutor know. Our team are very understanding and know this may be a completely new scenario for you.
Share any resources ahead of your meeting. If there’s any evidence or materials that you plan on sharing with your interviewer it’s beneficial to send these ahead of your session to ensure they’ve got these and they don’t slow down the process. It also means if you do want to share any examples or portfolio work they have copies of high-quality.
Dress appropriately. Just because you’re attending from the comfort of your home doesn’t mean you should change how you present yourself. Wear what you would if you were coming onto campus and meeting in person.
Be prepared. Be passionate. Be yourself. Ultimately the reason you’ll be interviewing or auditioning is so our team get to meet you.
Home schooling others while balancing online learning
The past few years have introduced new ways of living, working and studying. For some, it's meant having to home school children whilst abalancing online learning, which is no mean feat.
We’ve compiled a list of educational resources that you may be able to use within your own family.
Approaching difficult to explain conversations
Many parents are wondering how to bring up things that are going on in the world in a way that will be reassuring and not make kids more worried than they already may be. Here is some advice around the pandemic from the experts at the Child Mind Institute.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website offers great responses and simple explanations to those big questions children often don’t realise their asking!
In addition, BBC Newsround offers a video from the doctor and his twin brother Dr Xand, from CBBC's Operation Ouch, answering questions asked by children.
Mental Health and Wellbeing support
A change in routine, having parents and siblings around a lot more than usual, potentially sleepless nights and not being able to leave the house can have effects on our young ones as well as ourselves.
DisneyJunior offers a lesson on identifying our feelings and understanding how to respond to them. Feelings change all the time, and it's important to understand how you are feeling, and why. Let your little ones' learn a little more about feelings with Bluey and Bingo's Feely Wheely!
Alternatively, Know Your Normal is a toolkit created by Ambitious About Autism. It aims to help young people outline what their 'normal' is, so they can explain to those who support them when they aren't feeling themselves.
Home Schooling resources
BBC Bitesize has published online lessons for all ages. They also have a new dedicated TV channel full of learning content and podcasts on BBC Sounds and loads of educational videos on iPlayer.
Used by both GCSE and ALevel students, Gojimo Revision is the free app that helps you revise and pass exams. Access over 40,000 practice questions for free.
Find useful advise and study help from The Manchester College, the number 1 College for Achievement in Greater Manchester.
Google Scholar allows you to search journals, save sources to your personal library, find quick quotes to support your theories and even builds your citations.
You can still access all our online resources, subject guides and eBooks from home or from any device by visiting our personal online Library Services.
As a student of UCEN Manchester, you're entitled to both counselling on campus, as well as 24-hour support from our partner PAM Assist.
Ask the student experience team on your campus about how to access this or visit our Student Support page and Future U booklet for more details.
Aside from this, we'd also recommend the following external resources for support with anxiety and depression.
Anxiety UK - Support for those who suffer from anxiety
Blurt it Out - Increasing awareness and understanding of depression
Calm - The campaign against living miserably
Mind - Advice and support
Samaritans - 24 hour telephone advice
Student Space - Student specific support and resources
Young Minds - mental health support for young minds
NHS - if you are experiencing a mental health crisis you can visit A&E for Mental Health support. You can find your local A&E here.
You can also speak to our Careers and Welfare team, part of our wider Future U Student Support Services offer by emailing us here.