Help and support for mental and emotional health

Everyone has mental health – sometimes good, sometimes not so good. You may have been diagnosed with a mental health condition, or you may be feeling low, stressed, depressed, anxious, angry, or feeling that life isn't worth living. You might be worrying about a specific issue, like exams or friendships, or you might be feeling down about a number of things. Whatever your concerns are, no matter how long you've had them or whether or not you know the cause, come along and discuss your situation with us.

Contact your Student Services Hub

If you are experiencing emotional distress or have a diagnosed mental health difficulty, you can contact Student Services Hub who will be able to guide you to help and support.

It might feel difficult to contact your Student Services Hub because you might think your problem is too big or too small; you may feel embarrassed, ashamed or be afraid that people may judge you. We understand you may feel anxious, but we are not here to judge you and what you say will be treated with respect and held in confidence.

In the evenings or at weekends you can talk to Nightline, or if you live in University accommodation contact Residence Life


Find out who to contact in a medical or mental health emergency.

Workshops, groups and support

Online mental health support 

Chat with Charlie

Chat with Charlie offers online mental health support every evening between 6pm – 10pm. You can get support with exam stress, relationships, low mood, anxiety or anything else which may be troubling you however big or small it may seem.

Log on to register and chat with one of our team or find out how to get additional support. For more information, contact


If you're worried, feeling low or stressed, or finding it hard to sleep, you may want to explore our new online mental health programme from SilverCloud.

Therapy for you

Therapy for you provides free online CBT-psychoeducational courses delivered by NHS therapists. Treatment is delivered through a series of video sessions that you can complete anywhere at anytime.

Other services

Dealing with worry workshop

This is a guided self-help workshop run by Health in Mind which will help you to recognise symptoms of anxiety and worry, and learn practical tools and techniques to improve symptoms and manage your worries. This is a workshop for up to 14 people with similar issues, led by 2 facilitators.

Location and times

  • Location: University of Essex, Colchester Campus
  • Time: 2.30pm - 4.30pm
  • Start date: held every Wednesday for 4 weeks, starting 29 May 2019

Sign up

If you are already using Health In Mind, discuss it with your therapist.

Refer to Health in Mind stating an interest in the Workshops at Essex by calling 0300 330 5455 or visit the Health in Mind website. You can also refer via your GP, Occupational Health or Student Wellbeing and Inclusivity Service (SWIS).

Benefits of attending

  • Learn effective skills in a supportive environment.
  • Support to make changes.
  • Feedback from past workshops tells us that people found it be helpful to meet others with similar difficulties and to know that they aren't alone.
  • There is no expectation to share personal information within the workshops.


Our University works in partnership with an organisation called Validium to offer short-term counselling to help you explore and work through problems and difficulties that are causing distress and interfering with your life at University.


A mentor can meet with you for regular appointments to offer:

  • help to manage your difficulties alongside your studies
  • practical and emotional support through listening and problem solving
  • assistance with independent learning and development of study skills
  • help with liaising with your department to make sure you have the support you need on your course
  • practical help in the library and help with organising your study space and study materials

Applying for mentoring

In order to apply for on-going mentoring, you will need to have received a diagnosis of a long-term mental health difficulty and apply for Disabled Students' Allowance as this can fund mentoring support for the duration of your studies. You will also need to provide evidence your diagnosis (ie. a doctor/GP letter when completing the form).

If you would like to discuss mentoring or need any help with the application process then come to the disability drop-in during our opening hours or contact us.

Getting active

Being active is great for your physical health and fitness, and evidence shows it can also improve your mental wellbeing. Essex Sport offer a wide range of activities. The NHS have produced guidance on how to get active and the benefits exercise can give you.

Disabled Students' Allowance for mental health conditions

Disabled Students' Allowance (DSA) is government funding available to UK home students to help meet the extra costs you may face as a direct result of your disability, specific learning difficulty or long-term medical or mental health condition.

If you have a diagnosed long-term mental health condition you may be eligible for DSA. This can fund extra equipment such as a digital recorder, as well as one-to-one support from a specialist mentor or tutor. You would need to provide evidence of your mental health difficulties (ie. a letter from your doctor/GP confirming your diagnosis and current treatment).

Getting a medical diagnosis

If you require an official medical diagnosis of a mental health difficulty, you will need to make an appointment to see your doctor/GP who can discuss this with you and/or refer you to a specialist service if appropriate.

External support services


Eating disorder, body dysmorphia and self-harm

Drug, alcohol and gambling addiction services

Other useful organisations

Student Services Hub
Need help?

If you need any further help and advice, please contact or visit the Student Services Hub who will be happy to assist you.