Universities and colleges across the country have been issued guidelines by the University Grant’s Commision (UGC) to address psychological concerns of students during the COVID-19 lockdown.
“During the period of national lockdown, it is equally important to address any kind of mental health and psychological concerns of the student community during and after the COVID-19”, said UGC Secretary Rajnish Jain in a recent notice addressed to vice-chancellors and principals across the nation.
UGC has therefore directed all colleges and universities to set up mental health helplines for assisting students during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The helplines would be regularly monitored and managed by Counsellors and other identified faculty members who are capable of guiding students in the right direction.
UGC emphasized that in order to reassure the student community to avoid any kind of stress or panic in the prevailing situation vis-a-vis their studies, health and other issues, all universities must take measures for mental health and psychological well-being of their students.
The commission appealed to colleges to remain calm and stress free. It also suggested forming COVID-19 help groups of students headed by hostel wardens or senior faculty members that can identify their friends or classmates in need of help and provide necessary counselling to deal with stress and anxiety.
“There should be regular mentoring of students through interactions that can be achieved via telephones, e-mails, digital and social media platforms”, Jain added.
The official video:
Caption: Colleges are expected to share videos on managing one’s mental health and well-being during the COVID-19 outbreak through their websites.
UGC has also shared the Psycho-Social toll-free helpline number of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare – 0804611007. Students and faculty members can contact this helpline to seek professional counselling to resolve their mental health concerns.
Feature Image Credits: Zee News