Swansea Sirens Mental Health Report

Looking after the mental health of university students is particularly important because of all of the challenges that can come along with university life.

Swansea Sirens doing a double down into cradle position at Varsity

What are the Sirens doing for mental health?

Looking after the mental health of university students is particularly important because of all of the challenges that can come along with university life. For the majority of students it is their first time living alone which can come with feelings of isolation and loneliness, along with the added pressures of academic and social stress. As a sports club within the university, we have the ideal setting to help improve the mental wellbeing of students and we consider this a key aspect of what we do as a club.

This year has been particularly strenuous on everyone’s mental health, so we have tried to really improve how much we do to look after our members, make sure that they feel as happy as possible and most importantly, to make sure they feel like our club is a safe place to open up about things that are worrying them.


Our Welfare Officer

The first thing that we did this year was to introduce a new committee role dedicated to considering and supporting the mental health of the Swansea Sirens. As a committee we have always had the mental health of our members at the forefront of our minds. However, as a student-led committee we can become incredibly busy. We decided that we didn’t want to ever be too busy to keep members’ mental wellbeing as a priority and therefore, the introduction of a welfare officer enables us to do that. Our welfare officer Hebe Elvidge has worked so hard with our club captain Lucy Dixon to look after our members this year. As welfare officer, Hebe has created a weekly tradition in our club called ‘Welfare Wednesdays’. Every Wednesday she posts in our Facebook page asking members to post a coloured heart emoji to signify how they have been feeling over the past week and encourages them to write about their feelings, whether good or bad. We were delighted to see that our members began to post openly about their good weeks as Hebe has outlined its important to recognise and think about positive things that happen to us as affirmations. We were also surprised at how many of our members commented alongside their emoji talking openly about problems that they’ve been having with their mental health recently and we were so pleased to see so many other members commenting words of support and privately messaging to offer a friendly face to speak to. We are still continuing this tradition every week as it has definitely opened up the club as a place where people can feel comfortable to talk. It is so nice to see that some friendships have been formed based off these posts, especially during a pandemic where it has been difficult for many to maintain friendships, let alone form them.

As welfare officer Hebe has also ran a variety of events such as virtual coffee mornings on zoom to encourage our members to continue socialising throughout isolation periods, as well as virtual yoga events and we are hoping to do an in-person beach yoga morning now that restrictions have eased!! She also consistently posts mental health resources and wellbeing online infographics to our group chats and Instagram stories to create an environment that is focused on mental wellbeing within our club.

Keeping Active
Finally, throughout the year we have been continued to run weekly virtual training sessions and of course in-person training sessions when we could (not as much as we’d like!!) to encourage our members and committee to remain as active as possible throughout lockdown. Physical activity is incredibly important as it has been proven to vastly improve mental health. We hope that our provision of online training has helped to keep our Sirens as fit, happy and healthy as possible during lockdown when it was so easy to not adequately look after our physical and mental health.

We are so thankful to Hebe, our committee and all of our members for creating such a positive atmosphere within the club and look forward to what next year’s welfare officer will do for our club!

Beth mae'r Sirens yn ei wneud dros iechyd meddwl? 

Mae gofalu am iechyd meddwl myfyrwyr prifysgol yn arbennig o bwysig oherwydd yr holl heriau a all ddod o fywyd yn y brifysgol. I'r mwyafrif o fyfyrwyr, dyma eu tro cyntaf yn byw ar eu pennau eu hunain a all ddod â theimladau o unigedd ac unigrwydd, ynghyd â phwysau ychwanegol straen academaidd a chymdeithasol. Fel clwb chwaraeon yn y brifysgol, mae gennym y lleoliad delfrydol i helpu i wella lles meddyliol myfyrwyr ac rydym yn ystyried hyn yn agwedd allweddol ar yr hyn a wnawn fel clwb. 

Mae eleni wedi bod yn arbennig o anodd ar iechyd meddwl pawb, felly rydyn ni wedi ceisio gwella faint rydyn ni'n ei wneud i edrych ar ôl ein haelodau, sicrhau eu bod nhw'n teimlo mor hapus â phosib ac yn bwysicaf oll, i sicrhau eu bod nhw'n teimlo fel bod ein clwb ni lle diogel i siarad yn agored am bethau sy'n eu poeni. 


Ein Swyddog Lles 

Y peth cyntaf wnaethom ni eleni oedd cyflwyno rôl newydd ar y pwyllgor sy'n ymroddedig i ystyried a chefnogi iechyd meddwl Sirens Abertawe. Fel pwyllgor rydym ni wastad wedi cael iechyd meddwl ein haelodau ar flaen ein meddyliau. Ond, fel pwyllgor dan arweiniad myfyrwyr gallwn fod yn hynod o brysur. Fe wnaethon ni benderfynu nad oedden ni eisiau bod yn rhy brysur i gadw lles meddyliol ein haelodau yn flaenoriaeth ac felly, mae cyflwyno swyddog lles yn ein galluogi i wneud hynny. Mae ein swyddog lles Hebe Elvidge wedi gweithio mor galed gyda chapten ein clwb, Lucy Dixon, i ofalu am ein haelodau eleni. Fel swyddog lles, mae Hebe wedi creu traddodiad wythnosol yn ein clwb o’r enw ‘Lles Dydd Mercher’. Bob dydd Mercher mae hi'n postio ar ein tudalen Facebook yn gofyn i aelodau bostio emoji calon lliw i nodi sut maen nhw wedi bod yn teimlo dros yr wythnos ddiwethaf ac yn eu hannog i ysgrifennu am eu teimladau, boed yn dda neu'n ddrwg. Roeddem yn falch iawn o weld bod ein haelodau wedi dechrau postio'n agored am eu hwythnosau da gan fod Hebe wedi amlinellu ei bod yn bwysig cydnabod a meddwl am bethau cadarnhaol sy'n digwydd i ni fel datganiadau cadarnhaol. Roeddem hefyd wedi synnu faint o'n haelodau a wnaeth sylwadau ochr yn ochr â'u emoji yn siarad yn agored am broblemau maent wedi bod yn eu cael gyda'u hiechyd meddwl yn ddiweddar ac roeddem mor falch o weld cymaint o aelodau eraill yn rhoi geiriau o gefnogaeth a negeseuon preifat i gynnig wyneb cyfeillgar i siarad â hi. Rydym yn dal i barhau â'r traddodiad hwn bob wythnos gan ei fod yn bendant wedi agor y clwb fel man lle gall pobl deimlo'n gyffyrddus i siarad. Mae hi mor braf gweld bod cyfeillgarwch wedi ffurfio yn seiliedig ar y sylwadau hyn, yn enwedig yn ystod pandemig lle mae wedi bod yn anodd i lawer gynnal cyfeillgarwch, heb sôn am eu ffurfio. 

Fel swyddog lles mae Hebe hefyd wedi cynnal amrywiaeth o ddigwyddiadau fel boreau coffi rhithwir ar Zoom i annog ein haelodau i barhau i gymdeithasu trwy gyfnodau ynysu, yn ogystal â digwyddiadau yoga rhithwir ac rydym yn gobeithio gwneud bore ioga traeth corfforol nawr bod y cyfyngiadau wedi lleihau!! Mae hi hefyd yn postio adnoddau iechyd meddwl a ffeithluniau ar-lein lles yn gyson i'n sgyrsiau grwp a straeon Instagram i greu amgylchedd sy'n canolbwyntio ar les meddyliol yn ein clwb. 

Cadw’n Heini 

Yn olaf, trwy gydol y flwyddyn rydym wedi parhau i gynnal sesiynau hyfforddi rhithwir bob wythnos ac wrth gwrs sesiynau hyfforddi corfforol pan allem (dim cymaint ag yr hoffem!!) er mwyn annog ein haelodau a'n pwyllgor i aros mor heini â phosibl trwy gydol y cyfnodau cloi. Mae gweithgaredd corfforol yn hynod o bwysig oherwydd profwyd ei fod yn gwella iechyd meddwl yn aruthrol. Gobeithiwn fod ein darpariaeth o hyfforddiant ar-lein wedi helpu i gadw’r Sirens mor heini, hapus ac iach â phosibl yn ystod y cyfnodau cloi pan oedd hi mor hawdd peidio â gofalu am ein hiechyd corfforol ac iechyd meddwl yn ddigonol. 

Rydyn ni mor ddiolchgar i Hebe, ein pwyllgor a phob un o'n haelodau am greu awyrgylch mor gadarnhaol yn y clwb ac rydyn ni'n edrych ymlaen at yr hyn y bydd swyddog lles y flwyddyn nesaf yn ei wneud i'n clwb!