Looking up at the green leaves with sunlight shining through

Wellbeing

We are committed to create a healthy working environment and study space for our staff and students.

In line with Lancaster University’s commitment to supporting and improving the Wellbeing of staff and students, the Lancaster Environment Centre strive to provide a supportive environment with activities, opportunities and time to look after our wellbeing.

The NHS says – when it comes to our wellbeing, other people matter. Evidence shows that good relationships – with family, friends and our wider communities, including the workplace – are important for our mental wellbeing.

Mind, the Mental Health Charity, says mental wellbeing describes your mental state – how you are feeling and how well you can cope with day-to-day life. If you have good mental wellbeing you are able to:-

  • Feel relatively confident in yourself and have positive self esteem
  • Build and maintain good relationships with others
  • Feel engaged with the world around you
  • Live and work productively
  • Cope with the stresses of daily life
  • Adopt and manage in times of change and uncertainty

By providing spaces to maintain and improve wellbeing we can foster the confident, engaged, resilient and productive staff and students needed to (fulfil, tackle, work towards) our vision to address global environmental challenges.
LEC has a Wellbeing Officer, to communicate and promote the department’s efforts and liaise with faculty wide wellbeing champions.

Tab Content: Undergraduate Students

Students are at the centre of what we do. We aim to provide support and understanding in all situations. Our staff are encouraged to undertake Mental Health Awareness training. They are not counsellors but will direct to the best place for help and put in place support in department as available.

Support is available from The Counselling and Mental Health Service. This Service is comprised of University staff who are all qualified and professional mental health practitioners.  This includes the College Wellbeing Officers, who are part of the Service but reside in offices within the Colleges, and the Counsellors and Mental Health Advisors, who reside in our central office within University House. For more information visit: https://www.lancaster.ac.uk/student-based-services/counselling-and-mental-health-service/.

Within LEC you can contact the UGT/PGT offices if you are experiencing any problems affecting your studies and they will signpost you to the appropriate place for help.

Tab Content: Research Students

Our goal is to recruit and nurture talented research students and create an inclusive and stimulating research environment. Some of these students will go on to careers in LEC and the wider University. Our postgraduate research students are part of our department and we strive to support them as we do our staff members. Our staff are encouraged to undertake Mental Health Awareness training. They are not counsellors but will direct to the best place for help and put in place support in department as available.

We organise social events including a programme of events in the welcome week to help new students get to know each other. There is a monthly Wellbeing Breakfast which provides healthy breakfast options at the start of the day, provides information on support services and wellbeing activities available and a chance to meet fellow students informally. In 2019 this breakfast is provided by a grant from the Lancaster University Friends Programme.

Support is available from The Counselling and Mental Health Service. This Service is comprised of University staff who are all qualified and professional mental health practitioners.  This includes the College Wellbeing Officers, who are part of the Service but reside in offices within the Colleges, and the Counsellors and Mental Health Advisors, who reside in our central office within University House. For more information visit: https://www.lancaster.ac.uk/student-based-services/counselling-and-mental-health-service/.

Tab Content: Staff

In the Faculty of Science and Technology (FST) we have adopted the Five Ways to Wellbeing framework, Be Aware, Be Informed, Be Connected, Be Active, Be Generous, used by the Government and charities such as MIND, the NHS and universities, to provide information to help Staff manage and improve our wellbeing. There is a dedicated FST Staff Wellbeing site with information on support services, Wellbeing activities and ideas and links to outside organisations. It includes a information on Support for Students so that staff can easily find the information they need to support our students Wellbeing.

In LEC our staff work to 8 core values which all have a Wellbeing focus:

  1. Share the load - We all often need people to help in different ways throughout the year, much of this relies on collegiality and is a LEC strength.
  2. Be here – The accessibility of staff and the way we engage both formally and informally with our students contributes to good student wellbeing.
  3. Be family friendly – To respect colleagues with families we try to constrain formal meetings to during the school day and are mindful of school holidays.
  4. Switch off – It is fine to switch off outside normal working hours and staff are not obliged to be always online.
  5. Sleep Well – Sleep is important. We encourage staff to take time out in the evenings and take their holidays
  6. Be flexible – Sometimes weekend and evening work is necessary. Staff are encouraged to give this time back to families at other times
  7. Meet your colleagues – It’s easy to work in isolation but we encourage staff to attend seminars, conferences and communal tea breaks. And we host an annual Summer BBQ for staff and students
  8. Don’t worry – If anyone is having difficulties there is always a route to help. We are a supportive department. First points of contact are line managers, group leads and the wellbeing working group.