DHET Urges Staff and Students to Prioritise their Health and Wellness
The Higher Education and Training Health, Wellness and Development Centre known as Higher Health, has urged staff and students, especially first-year students, to make their personal health and wellness a priority.
In a communique sent to all public universities and TVET colleges, Higher Health CEO, Dr Ramneek Ahluwalia, said the mission of his office is to ‘inspire success through improving wellbeing among students across all our public university and TVET campuses.’
‘The transition from childhood to adulthood can be difficult, and students need tools to navigate this transition successfully and deal with considerable stresses which often include pressures arising from economic hardship. As a student entering university or college for the first time, you will experience unprecedented freedom and opportunity, but you will also be burdened with more responsibility than you previously carried. Both the pleasures of freedom and the pressures of responsibility can impact on your health and wellness, in the short term and possibly for the rest of your life,’ said Ahluwalia.
Higher Health will be focusing on seven priority areas particularly pertinent to young people engaged in challenging processes of personal, intellectual and professional development, namely: Gender-Based Violence (GBV); Mental Health; HIV/TB/sexually transmitted infections (STIs); Sexual Reproductive Health/Unplanned Youth and Teenage Pregnancies; Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention; LGBTQI destigmitisation; and disability sensitisation.
‘We urge you: our students, to take care of your health and wellness by first finding out where to access your campus health and wellness programme and to participate in activities and programmes that are available at your campuses,’ he said, adding that the activities include:
• Second curriculum peer-to-peer education training, dialogues, debates, forum discussions, etc.
• Self-assessment and screenings to risks such as GBV, mental health issues, STIs, and unplanned pregnancies
• Health and wellness campus and community radio shows and First Things First activations - where various health screening and testing services come to campuses for easy access.
For detailed information on the seven priority areas, follow this link.
Words: Sithembile Shabangu