Minister Harris announces €5 million in mental health supports for third level students

Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris has announced €5 million in mental health support for students.

The funding is an important investment in the wellbeing and support of students across the country. The allocations include €431,667 for ATU, and €316,438 for University of Galway.

“We know this generation are facing mental health challenges like no other," Minister Harris said. “The pressure our young people are facing requires important interventions at the right stage of their lives. That is why we have provided €20.9 million to Higher Education Institutions since 2020.

“Crucially, this has allowed universities recruit additional student counsellors, and additional assistant psychologists — 77 were hired last year alone. The funding this year will embed these services in our college campuses.”

Universities have the flexibility to use the funding to address the needs of their student population.

They can engage a range of other important staff in this domain, such as clinical case managers, heads of service, mental health officers, framework implementation managers, admin staff, mental health nurses or GPs, etc.

“Since I became Minister, I have travelled to almost every college campus in the country and one of the consistent messages I receive is that students need support in this area," Minister Harris added. “I am so delighted we have managed to have secured this level of funding every year for the past three years.

“Crucially, this will also help us roll out national projects including a 24-seven peer service, the establishment of a national office for the Psychological Counsellors in Higher Education Ireland and a new data building service to establish a network of researchers in the area of suicide and self-harm.

“I know this funding will make a real difference to college-goers across the country.”

 

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