It’s understandable that during times like this, you may be feeling afraid, worried, anxious and overwhelmed by the constantly changing alerts and media coverage regarding the spread of the virus. While it is important to stay informed, it’s also more important than ever to look after your mental health and wellbeing.

 

Stay connected – Practice physical distancing and social connectedness. Check in with your peers, colleagues, friends and family, and aim for at least one phone or video conversation every day (even if it is something you might normally just send them in a message).

Create a routine – Don’t burn yourself out! Set your study hours, and when they’re done, relax. Take me time – Factor in exercise, coffee breaks and time out from your studies, and make sure that you’re still making time to do things that bring you joy.

Look after yourself – Drink lots of water, eat balanced meals, don’t live in your pyjamas and get enough sleep. Take a break from news and social media – while the news cycle runs non-stop these days, that doesn’t mean that we have to always tune into it. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the constant flow of information you may find it helpful to set a dedicated time in our day to check social media and news websites, or have a break from it altogether.
Headspace – How to cope with stress related to Novel Coronavirus. Headspace is a dedicated mental health support resource for young people ages 18-25 years old. You can chat to a counsellor for free on 1800 650 890 or connect with them via online chat and email. Find out more here.

Black Dog Institute – Resources for anxiety, stress and wellbeing

RUOK – Staying connected is more important than ever

Beyond Blue – Looking after your mental health during the Coronavirus outbreak

Lifeline – Mental health and wellbeing during the Coronavirus outbreak. Lifeline offer free counselling via phone call on 13 11 14, or via text and online chat.Find out more here.

UniMelb - COVID-19: managing stress and anxiety for students. All University of Melbourne students have access to free counselling services, you can book an appointment here.
We’re all in this together. Lending a helping hand or giving what you can is a great way to stay connected to community, and make tangible change in other’s lives.

There are lots of simple ways we can look out for each other over this time, check out some ideas below.

Ask others if they’re OK – It’s very normal to not feel OK in challenging times such as these. Watching and listening to media and social media coverage and commentary can be confronting and confusing. However, at a time when we’re being asked to physically distance ourselves from one another, we can make use of freed up diary time and our digital devices to stay connected and check in with the welfare of others.

Australian Red Cross – Lifeblood are calling out to anyone who is feeling well and hasn’t travelled overseas in the past 28 days to come forward and donate blood. In fact, they will need 14,000 more donors in the next few weeks to prevent a shortage. It only takes an hour, but it could save someone’s life.

Priority food delivery – Woolworths are offering priority food delivery to seniors, people with disabilities or compromised immune systems. Sign up, or help out a friend or relative.

Donate to those in need – Pro Bono Australia lets your search through a list of trusted charities and contribute to the causes you care about.

Graduate Survey.Got 10 minutes? Melbourne Graduate School of Education has launched a survey to investigate the impact of COVID-19 on students. Share your perspective, concerns and challenges and make an important contribution to supporting other students during this difficult time. Take the survey.
With restrictions easing in Victoria, we are no longer confined to our homes. However, it’s important to know that you can still leave your home or accommodation to escape harm or violence under any coronavirus restrictions.
The pandemic and self-isolation requirements may impact you or those you live with. There may be financial pressure, tensions or a heightened sense of uncertainty and anxiety. No matter what the external stressors, violence should not be tolerated. You are not alone. If you feel frightened or need advice, help or support, or a safe place to stay during the pandemic there are organisations that will provide assistance. If you are at immediate risk, call the police at 000. They are available 24/7. Family violence courts are open and intervention orders are still possible at this time. If you or a friend are suffering physical or sexual harm, please seek help or offer them support.
You can access a variety of resources via the Victorian Government’s Family and Violence Crisis Response page. You can also call:
  • 1800 Respect  Phone: 1800 737 732 NRS: 1800 555 677 Interpreter: 13 14 50; Or load this app, which has advice on safety, and services in your area. 1800 Respect is a national confidential information, counselling and support service.

Phone: 1800 806 292 or Email ahcasa@thewomens.org.au . If you are experiencing sexual harm, contact CASA or the after-hours Sexual Assault Crisis Line (SACL).

  • The Men’s Referral Service

Phone: 1300 766 49 (24 hours – NSW & Tas / 8am-9pm). If you’re concerned about your own behaviour or you are causing harm to others, seek help. The Men’s Referral Service is a men’s family violence telephone counselling, information and referral service operating in Victoria, New South Wales and Tasmania. They also provide support and referrals for women and men seeking information on behalf of their male partners, friends or family members, and workers in a range of agencies seeking assistance for their clients who are men.

If you are feeling unwell, you can use the Department of Heath’s self-assessment tool to help you decide if you should be tested.

If you are experiencing common symptoms including fever, breathing difficulties such as breathlessness, cough, sore throat and fatigue, follow advice from the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), call the dedicated hotlines on 1800 675 398 (Victoria) or 1800 020 080 (national) and seek medical advice and testing. Once you have sought medical advice you should then let the University know by emailing Campus Community. A privacy collection notice is available.

If someone you know appears ill and is showing symptoms, encourage them to seek medical assistance.