Student Association are Four Star Stars!

West Lothian College Student Association has ended the academic year on a high after being awarded 4 stars from the Healthy Body Healthy Mind Awards for the third consecutive year.

The Healthy Body Healthy Mind Award is a partnership initiative between NUS Scotland and Scottish Student Sport, funded by the Scottish Government, which focus on the link between sports, physical activity, smoking prevention and mental health.

To gain a Healthy Body Healthy Mind award students’ associations, sports unions, colleges and universities must work together on projects that aim to bring about practical health and wellbeing changes across the whole institution. These changes include improved sport and recreational programmes, better signposting to student services and external organisations that can provide support, working towards smoke free campuses, and educating staff and students about positive mental wellbeing through sports teams and fitness facilities.

Vital aspects of this project are promoting healthy lifestyles and encouraging people to take care of their own wellbeing given the well documented links between exercise and mental health. Some of the activities undertaken were as follows:

  • Free membership to the college gym and fitness classes 
  • Information on mindfulness, seated yoga and NLP, including guidance on how to access services 
  • Printed resources detailing various local and national support services and contact details 
  • Welfare pack– including toiletries and sanitary products 
  • Information on current wellbeing initiatives such as the free soup and a roll initiative on offer to all current students during lunchtime each day 
  • Nutritional advice–recipe ideas and portion control advice 
  • Stop smoking support-drop in sessions and helplines 
  • Free hair appointment and beauty treatment in the college’s own training salon 

Jenny Stalker, Head of Quality and Learner Services at West Lothian College said: “West Lothian Student Association is driven to support students on their college journey.  We took part in the Healthy Body Healthy Mind Award in order to empower students to make positive changes to their mental and physical lifestyle.  Our aim was to promote student health and wellbeing, combat lifestyle apathy and inspire the change that is needed to encourage physical activity, mental health awareness and maintaining a work /life balance which supports mental wellbeing.  This award recognises the excellent partnership the college has with the Student Association and the huge amount of work the Student Association put into ensuring our students are well supported while studying.   We are thrilled for the Student Association and the college to be granted 4 stars.”