A lettings company has combined forces with a small charity to boost student mental health.
Chester Student Lets (CSL) has chosen Chapter as its first ever Charity of the Year.
The two organisations launched their new relationship with a mental health-themed open day marking Mental Health Awareness Week.
Chapter provides support to local people with severe mental illness.
The open day welcomed students into the CSL hub on Garden Lane in Chester to enjoy fun and games, speak to a qualified therapist, pet some friendly therapy dogs, and get some tips on how to maintain good mental health during difficult times.
Students were invited to write their anxieties on a ‘rationalisation wall’ and write what helped them ‘rationalise’ that concern on the other side.
Chapter provided a ‘make your own earrings’ masterclass from their arts and crafts course, giving students a chance to learn a new skill.
Students were welcomed by Benji the therapy dog and his friend Bodhi, putting a smile on the faces of guests and passers-by.
One student said: “I have friends who attend universities in other cities, and they’ve not received any of this sort of support.
“We’re really lucky that CSL see the value in embracing good mental health with days like these.”
Jools Barsky, CSL’s head of operations and customer experience, said: “There has been a massive increase within the past year in individuals who have come forward to let us know that they, or someone they know, is experiencing mental ill-health.
“It was important to find a charity that could help students with this.
“Our open day showed that mental health problems are very common, particularly when moving away from home for the first time and encountering so many new experiences and challenges.
“We’re really excited about our new partnership with Chapter, which will benefit not only our students but also CSL staff who will receive Chapter’s mental health awareness training.”
Chapter’s fundraiser Matt Zeqiri said: “We’re delighted to have been chosen as CSL’s first ever Charity of the Year, and really encouraged that a local business is taking mental health so seriously.”