Page:Mental Health Support Options

This page aims to highlight some of the sources of support available to you (or a friend) experiencing mental health difficulties. Even if things are difficult, you are not alone.

The first step is recognising the issue: Samaritans lists some of the key signs of struggling to cope.


Very urgent support


Support options in college

  • College Nurse

  • College Counsellor (if applicable)

  • College Mental Health Advisor (if applicable)

  • Tutor (see duties)

  • (On) Duty Tutor (contact details available via porters)

  • Porters 

  • Chaplain

  • Director of Studies (DoS), if applicable (see duties)

  • College Welfare Officers (note: have less time and expertise than the professional services)

  • See your college welfare page for more welfare information


Other support available

  • Calling 111 (option 2) to reach Cambridge NHS' First Response Service, for people in mental health crises. See more information here.
  • Contacting a listening line for support (you can usually message as well as ring)

    • Samaritans (volunteer-run service)

    • Nightline (student-run service; available 7pm-7am during term-term)

    • IM Alive (instant messenger)

    • Kooth (local instant messaging service with trained counsellors for under-25s; available evenings)

    • There are many other listening services available. See here for a more detailed list (in downloadable form).



  • University Counselling Service 

    • Offers individual and group counselling, workshops and self-help leaflets 

      • Note that indicating greater availability will reduce wait times. Urgent cases will also be seen sooner, and may be referred to within-service Mental Health Advisors, for practical crisis support.


  • Students’ Unions’ Advice Service 

    • Provides (Cambridge-specific knowledge) for impartial, non-judgmental and non-directive advice regarding the problem(s). You can phone or email, make an appointment or just drop-in.


  • Speak to your GP about support and treatment available (including potential medication). You can read more about drugs and treatments on Mind's website, and see more information about accessing the NHS in Cambridge here.



  • Visit the Keep Your Head website, a site that brings together local support services for young people (NB: targeted at sixth-form age)


  • If you are experiencing symptoms of psychosis, you can contact Cameo, an early intervention service in Cambrideshire.


  • Recognise that while not mental health problems in themselves, anger, and alcohol and drug use, can be connected to mental health problems, either as contributing factors or as symptoms. As well as visiting the above links to find out more about each of these issues, people you can talk to include your College Nurse or GP and the UCS.


Specific Support Services 

  • For a more comprehensive list of support services, including local and national services, on a wider range of issues (including bereavement, alcohol problems, and assault), see here. This can be downloaded here




Disability support for the longer term

  • Disability Resource Centre

    • If you have a diagnosed mental health problem, you may be entitled to reasonable adjustments. Arrange a meeting with a Disability Advisor via the reception (email to discuss this.



Improving understanding of mental health problems

  • Mind's A-Z of Mental Health

  • Blueprint, a Cambridge-based zine founded by Micha Frazer-Carroll that looks at mental health from an intersectional perspective

  • Recognise intersectionality with other issues, e.g. experiences of discrimination negatively impacting on mental health


Supporting someone else 


If you don't know where to start, turn to the Students' Unions' Advice Service and/or your tutor, since both of these can help you work out which services are best suited to your needs, and help you access these.



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