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Stress less with a beanbag, the Lion King and a Zoo

Saturday, 30 May, 2015

Students were invited to grab a beanbag, chill with The Lion King movie and de-stress at the Petting Zoo during Stress Less Week on the 11th-15th of May.

UMSU’s Welfare Department organised a week full of activities and mental health programs aimed at reducing students’ stress levels before exams.

More than 26 per cent of university students experience a mental health disorder, according to a 2013 study by the Australian Medical Students Association.

UMSU Welfare Officer James Bashford said the end of semester is a difficult period for many students and the campaign addressed to some of the pressures on them.

“The awareness of Stress Less Week is really broad on campus, I’m constantly overhearing people talk about it and it’s been a great success,” said Mr Bashford.

The week kicked off with a free beanbag cinema, with free popcorn and drinks for students to enjoy a moment to unwind with their friends.

Student Anje Delport said she found it to be particularly helpful to focus on stress-free activities for a change.

“I think it’s a good thing being in Week Ten because people look forward to it and come, whereas if it was every fortnight people would know that events are on next week too, so they’d study instead.”

The Stress Less Carnival and inflatable soccer were the most popular events for most students. The Wom*ns Department conducted self-care workshops and crafter-noon sessions, while there were many other accessible activities such as free yoga, free breakfasts and anxiety support groups.

Environments student Edip Buyukbekir said, “it was calming, peaceful and mostly comforting, all you need is something to hug and what better thing to cuddle than an animal.”