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Pioneering Eating Disorders Project Coming Soon…
Eating disorders are estimated to affect 1-3% of our student population, this may not sound like a lot, but by taking a look around your lecture theatre or considering the amount of students residing at your accommodation you start to realise just how close to home the problem is. That’s just people who will be diagnosed, many more slip under the radar, unnoticed.
Most people believe that eating disorders are the product of one single cause; however they are more likely to stem from a combination of other problems, which pile up out of nowhere leaving you unable to cope. They can be triggered by the death of a loved one, fall-outs with parents, friends or even just feeling lonely. Using food to mask painful situations can quickly become a lifelong issue when food becomes the only part of your life you can control, but then again, you’re not really in control; by this point your life is being run by this disorder.
Taking that all important step from home to university is pretty much a leap into the unknown for most students. Before you know it, your diary’s littered with deadlines, you’ve got reading coming out your ears with simply not enough hours in the day to fit it all in, never mind socialising and settling in. This transition is more daunting when, on top of everything else, you’re struggling with eating difficulties. How do you explain these things to your new friends, when you’re struggling to figure this out for yourself? And if you do come up with an answer, are they going to constantly walk on egg shells around you? Can you turn to them when you’re having an off day? Independence sounds great on paper, however, reality is frankly far from special. We all need some support from time to time; someone to listen and understand, not judge.
The average age of onset is usually during the years you spend as a student, so this is the best time to reach out for help. Having started in Nottingham University as part of the national B-eat campaign, the Student Run Self Help (SRSH) group aims to support students with eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia. It provides a friendly, safe environment for students at all stages of their disorder to have the space to share any issues or feelings. The groups are there not only to help them overcome this disorder, but to encourage them to engage in treatment, taking those crucial first steps on the road to recovery. Having seen the success of such groups in both Nottingham and Oxford University, why not move it to the University of Leicester too?
Starting in February 2010, this amazing new project is landing at our very own university. SRSH meetings will begin running on a regular basis to provide additional support to sufferers at the University of Leicester and as you’ve probably realised, that isn’t too far from now! So that’s where you come to the rescue, we need you to help us raise awareness over the next couple of weeks. Being only the 3rd in the UK, we want to make ours just as successful and well known as Nottingham and Oxford University’s. Help us spread the word, it’s so simple… all we want you to do is join our facebook fanpage and get all your friends to do the same, bring it up at every opportunity. We want the whole of Leicester to know that this incredible project has finally landed here.
I know what you’re thinking, ‘But I don’t know anyone with an eating disorder…’. Then do it for those statistical six people in your lecture theatre or those two who live in your block. Show your support for us at the refreshers fair, get stuck in at our charity events, let those silent sufferers know that you care and want to make a difference. Help us shout about a very worthwhile cause! Thank you.
If you have any queries please don’t hesitate to contact us at:
Join our facebook fanpage by typing:
Raise Awareness For Leicester Uni's Student Run Self Help Group into the search box.