Project Talk

PROJECT:TALK is a new peer support initiative, originally created by students from the University of Bristol and now launching here at Queen Mary as a pilot in early 2021! The scheme works by connecting a team of trained student volunteers with students in need of support for a friendly, supportive chat, with the aim of helping look after the mental health of our student community.

We at the Students’ Union recognise that being a student can always be challenging, but this year has been particularly difficult for a lot our student community who have not only experienced the effects of a global pandemic but have faced personal difficulties too. Unfortunately, loneliness seems to be at an all-time high based on the feedback we’ve received, and we hope that this new initiative will be useful to those of you who need it to combat loneliness and prioritise your mental wellbeing.

It is always important to take care of your mental health and sometimes just talking to someone about your life can be a great way to process your feelings or just feel listened to! The PROJECT:TALK peer support scheme is not a substitute for professional support or counselling, but if you’re looking for a casual space to be listened to, this is the scheme for you!

We are currently recruiting our first cohort of volunteers and we will update this page once the pilot scheme launches in February 2021.

If you would like to volunteer with PROJECT:TALK as a peer supporter, please fill out the form on this page to register your interest and we will be in touch in January.

If you have any questions about the scheme, you can contact us at su-vpcommunities@qmul.ac.uk and su-vpwelfare@qmul.ac.uk

Access mental health support / help in a crisis

The PROJECT:TALK peer support scheme is not a professional service and we are not equipped to deal with emergencies or crisis situations. This scheme is for non-urgent, informal support only. If you're worried about your safety or that of someone else, or need urgent support, you can visit the University’s page on accessing help in a crisis here.

If you are in immediate danger of harming yourself or others, call 999.

For non-urgent professional support, you can contact the University’s Advice and Counselling Service by filling out the contact form on their website, or you can find more information about support services on our website here.

You can get involved in PROJECT:TALK either by signing up as a volunteer or by requesting to chat to one of our volunteers. Once the scheme launches, if you would like to arrange a one-to-one chat with one of our volunteers, you can do so by filling out a simple form and someone will be in touch to arrange a call.

Each one-to-one chat will last around 30 minutes and will be a friendly and relaxed outlet for any student to discuss what they are dealing with. Both the student and volunteer will have the opportunity to submit feedback to our team after each conversation to ensure everybody is comfortable and getting the experience they deserve and to let us know if you’d like to talk again.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we anticipate most calls will be via telephone or online however we will provide clearer guidance on this closer to the launch of the scheme.

Volunteer with us

The PROJECT:TALK pilot scheme will be launching in early 2021 and we’re looking to recruit 20 volunteers who are interested in supporting their fellow students through conversational peer support. The scheme can’t run without student volunteers, so if you have thirty minutes or more to spare each week and enjoy listening to others, why not sign up to take part?

Volunteers will be provided with comprehensive training from the PROJECT:TALK team in order to ensure they are equipped to offer appropriate peer support to fellow students. The training sessions will be mandatory and following each session there will be a short quiz.

Volunteers can decide how many 30-minute sessions they would like to take part in each week, and this can be reviewed depending on your availability. There will be a small amount of additional work involved in arranging sessions and filling out feedback forms.

Please note, the Students’ Union will be closed for the festive period from Friday 18th December until Monday 4th January. If you have registered your interest in volunteering, we will be in touch in January.

Register your interest
Request to chat with someone

Once the scheme launches, you will be able to arrange a one-to-one chat with one of our volunteers, whether you have something to get off your chest or are just interested in friendly conversation. You can do so by filling out a quick form on this page and someone will be in touch with you to arrange a time to chat.

We are currently in the process of recruiting our first cohort of volunteers and we will update this page once the pilot scheme launches in February 2021.


Access mental health support / help in a crisis

The PROJECT:TALK peer support scheme is not a professional service and we are not equipped to deal with emergencies or crisis situations. This scheme is for non-urgent, informal support only. If you're worried about your safety or that of someone else, or need urgent support, you can visit the University’s page on accessing help in a crisis here.

If you are in immediate danger of harming yourself or others, call 999.

For non-urgent professional support, you can contact the University’s Advice and Counselling Service by filling out the contact form on their website, or you can find more information about support services on our website here.

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Contact the Representation and Democracy team at your Students’ Union with any questions you may have.