Why vote for me?
Hi, my name is Olivia and I’m running for VP Welfare. This year as a member of several different union societies from music to sport and I’ve been directly involved in several welfare initiatives both within and outside societies.
Having had friends suffer from mental health issues and consequentially drop out I know that mental health is a huge unseen problem for many students that often goes unreported.
· Increased access to counselling and wellbeing appointments including increased availability, responsiveness and highlighting existing support such as The Advice Centre.
· Training for Welfare officers within societies and halls officers, on to how to identify and act on students suffering from welfare and mental health difficulties. As well as guidance and training on mediation and bullying.
· As part of the ‘You are more than your studies’ campaign introduce downtime rooms during exam periods on different campuses with advice and support on offer; to deal with exam stress.
· Lead an ‘Eat Well' campaign to help students with food budgeting and developing healthy meal plans; particularly during the exam period.
One of the unexplored areas of the role that I’ve witnessed being on several committees is data protection.
· Training for societies on data protection laws and guidance on storage of students or alumni data.
· Offer advice on how student groups should comply with the new General Data Protection Regulation
Sorting housing and dealing with landlords can be a huge constraint on many students.
· Highlighting and pushing existing union services such as Student lettings and The Advice Centre.
· Create an online forum could be used to discuss past experiences with landlords or to offer direct advice.
· As part of the ‘Don’t Rush to Rent’ campaign; holding drop-in sessions on housing within halls in the first semester to give targeted advice to first years.
Sustainability is something which I’m glad to say has had a large focus in recent years. I’d like to build on this success and see less disposable products at union outlets.
· Reduction of disposable bottled water on campus or plastic cups by working to increase the number of drinking fountains, and the selling and promoting of reusable bottles at SUSU outlets.
· Build on initiatives such as the ‘Swap Shop’ to create a place for students to be able to recycle, upcycle and swap their unwanted clothes, electronics and household items online.
· Support and promote campaigns such as blackout and review the current energy usage by the union.
Being at Southampton I’m incredibly proud of the diversity I see around me. However, I feel that divides exist between different ethnic, religious and social groups.
· Create more events focused on celebrating cultural identities on campus.
· Promote awareness about different identities and the beliefs of different groups through a campaign highlighting the diversity of groups and individuals at the university.
· Continue to support the creation of gender-neutral toilets.