Nepal Earthquake Appeal

nepal-friendship-societyUK Nepal Friendship Society and students from BU are organising a fundraising event for the Nepalese earthquake victims, on Tuesday 12 May, from 4pm -7pm, in Bournemouth Square.

Nepal was stuck by a huge earthquake on 25 April and there have been numerous aftershocks since. This natural disaster has created havoc on a massive scale; people are traumatised and lacking the proper care needed, continuous heavy rain across different parts of Nepal has increased the risk of disease on an epidemic scale. The death toll has reached almost 8,000, and thousands have been made homeless and destitute.

As a result, the UK Nepal Friendship Society and BU students are planning to raise funds for immediate relief and to help with the vast operation to rebuild Nepal, by hosting an event in Bournemouth Square. Donations will help to provide the much needed aid to people who have lost their homes and their families.*

*Donations via the UKNFS will be provided to disaster victims through official/reliable Government of Nepal and Embassy of Nepal – London – recommended/advised channels.

Become a Student Minds Facilitator… Last chance to apply!

student-mindsJoin the team at Student Minds, the UK’s student mental health charity! We’re looking for student volunteers to help run a brand new Positive Minds Course at Bournemouth University, providing peer-to-peer support for students experiencing mild depression.

We provide a fantastic opportunity for students who are interested in receiving training and on-going support in delivering this project. Successful applicants will join us for a two-day facilitator training workshop covering all the basics of running a safe and effective support group, from listening skills to publicity and lots more.

By creating a positive atmosphere for talking about mental health, we aim to give students the confidence to look after their own wellbeing. This is an opportunity not only to make a real difference to student life but also to develop your own skills and experience!

Applications close on Monday 30 March at Midday so don’t miss out!

For more information about the course and how to apply visit: Or contact with any questions. You can also contact Sarah Worley, Wellbeing Co-Ordinator at BU Student Emotional Wellbeing Service, for an informal chat about applying on 01202 965020 or email

SUBU Annual Review celebrates success

The 2014 Annual Review celebrated SUBU’s 20th birthday by showcasing another year of achievements.

The event, on Wednesday 4 June, was presented by the elected Full Time Officers, who highlighted all the great activities the Students’ Union at BU (SUBU) have been supporting, funding and making happen in 2013/14. Among the guests were Chancellor Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers, Vice Chancellor Professor John Vinney, Conor Burns MP, members of the University board, SUBU Board of trustees and previous SUBU Full Time Officers.

The Students’ Union at BU has been in operation for two decades and has grown with each passing year; supporting, developing and entertaining every new cohort passing through BU’s doors. This year was no exception and SUBU have plenty of successes to shout about.

One of the key achievements for 2013/14 was SUBU’s RAG (Raising and Giving) charity activities which raised over a quarter of a million pounds. The funds were split between local charities and worthy causes around the UK including, Dorset Blind Association, Autism Wessex, Alzheimer’s Society and Children with Cancer UK.

Volunteering increased by 40% this year with 734 students giving a helping hand to both local and national projects. The Big Feed was one of the more successful projects, managing to collect and deliver four tonnes of food to local families and food banks. Student engagement in extra-curricular activities, like volunteering, is a major player in affecting employability for BU students and it is high on SUBU’s yearly agenda.

The ‘Lock it or Lose it’ burglary prevention campaign helped to cement community relations this year as SUBU joined forces with Arts University Bournemouth, BU staff, local police and councillors. Combined with the newly created SUBU Community Warden team, this resulted in a 19.6% reduction in crime around Winton and 41% reduction in bin-related complaints from residents. The four new wardens managed to clock up over 50 miles of patrolling around the local area, helping to improve integration and relations between students and locals.

As if that weren’t enough, SUBU’s strides towards becoming a more ethical and environmentally friendly organisation were recognised with a Gold status NUS Green Impact Award.  Next year will see SUBU getting even more green on campus.

Encouraging student engagement in democratic decision-making and student representation also took a major step forward this year. Earlier in the year representatives from six other Students’ Unions were invited to Bournemouth so that SUBU could share their practices and expertise in student engagement. SUBU President Murray Simpson said,

“We’ve been highlighted as a feature of good practice for our evidence based feedback by the QAA, and believe a partnership approach with BU has enabled this to happen. We’ve come on leaps and bounds with welfare and democracy this year, and the Annual Review is a fantastic chance to look back and celebrate these successes.”

As a final visual treat, the audience experienced a nostalgic romp through the history of SUBU in a slide show of the last 20 years. The future of SUBU was also discussed, with a focus on the Union’s new home in the Student Centre and welcoming the new SUBU staff for 2014/15.

Student volunteers collect 2.2 tonnes of food for local foodbanks


Bournemouth University students collected a giant 2.2 tonnes of food for local foodbanks in a one-day volunteering challenge.

The Big Feed saw 26 volunteers, including a team of builders from Wilmott Dixon, compete in teams at six local supermarkets to accumulate the most food donations for Bournemouth, Poole & Kinson Foodbanks.

The event, organised by the Students’ Union at Bournemouth University (SUBU), encouraged students to contribute back to their local community, and provide extra resources for the area’s local foodbanks, which are experiencing a worrying rise in emergency demand.

With more donations still coming in, the total collection more than doubled the previous record of 1.5 tonnes, which was set at SUBU’s first Big Feed event in September 2013.

Kim Appleton, SUBU Volunteering Coordinator, said it was a testament to people’s generosity in the community.

“People’s donations have been incredible. We would have been happy matching our record, but to beat it so substantially is really a tribute to the tireless work of our volunteers and the generosity of the public.

“It’s going to be incredibly beneficial to the foodbanks, who are in constant need of supplies. None of us deserve to go hungry, but 1 in 5 mums regularly skip meals to feed their children, simply down to needing to pay bills or other expenses.

“This food will go a long way in supporting those in need of emergency supplies.”

The event concluded with a celebratory ceremony for all the volunteers in the evening with awards and prizes, including food hampers and event tickets for outstanding contributions.

Charities unite for Social Media strategy workshops

A project to help charities create a social media strategy has started at Bournemouth University.

BU’s Creative Enterprise Bureau (CEB) worked in collaboration with BU students, local charities and local digital agency Adido to combine skills and knowledge of social media.

The project started with a workshop delivered by social media experts to introduce the idea of having a social media strategy and the benefits of social media, as well as sharing some social media best practice.

A number of the students will then work with the charities as mentors to provide feedback and guidance on their social media strategy and content plans. Representatives from Adido and BU will also continue to be involved with the charities as they progress their social media content plans.

Dr Ana Adi, a lecturer in marketing and corporate communication at Bournemouth University, led on the project and said, “This is a wonderful opportunity for us to showcase what we teach as a group as well as for the students to find an immediate avenue to implement what they have learned as part of our courses. The collaboration with the local agency brings us industry recognition for what we do as well.”

Charities involved in the project include Dorset Mind, Bournemouth Gateway Club, Dorset Blind Association, Diverse Abilities Plus, Dorset Mental Health Forum, and Streetwise & Safewise.

BU donates medical equipment to charity for use in South Sudan

Medical equipment previously used by staff and students at Bournemouth University has been donated to a local charity, to help healthcare professionals in South Sudan.

The resuscitation mannequins and baby-weighing scales have been given to Poole Africa Link – a charity which assists Southern Sudanese healthcare professionals in developing their skills and self-sufficiency.

South Sudan is one of the poorest countries in the world, with low access to healthcare provision and high rates of maternal and child mortality.

The medical equipment donated by BU’s School of Health and Social Care has been taken to Wau Hospital in South Sudan, where it will be used to assist with training and patient care.

Hilary Fenton-Harris, Poole Africa Link Coordinator, said: “Receiving good-quality needed kit is a great encouragement to the people in Wau who work under conditions that it’s difficult to comprehend for most of us used to UK health care.

“Practising resuscitation scenarios plays an important part of the training we give in Wau both at the hospital and the training schools.

“The resuscitation mannequins given by the university were well received by both schools of nursing in Wau by the students and the nuns who teach them.”

She added that the baby weighing scales donated by BU had also made a big difference to clinics and care in the region.

“The baby weighing scales were received with great excitement by the community midwives who had no means of weighing babies prior to this,” Hilary said.

“We also gave some to a local malnutrition clinic and the paediatric and labour wards at the hospital. They will make a real difference to the care they can give.”

Events Management students from BU are also planning to support the charity, by holding a black tie fundraiser. It will take place at the Haven Hotel in Sandbanks, on March 29.

BU students charity trek to Machu Picchu

As part of the RAG challenge BU students Marnie Joyce (Physiotherapy) and Ben Conway (Sport Management) raised a fantastic £4,875 for the Association of International Cancer Research.

Their challenge was a six day trek to Machu Picchu along the Salkantay pass, which is over 100km long and is known as the most challenging route to Machu Picchu. The journey involved entering six different ecosystems and walking across extremely undulating terrain. With the highest peak at 4650m and lowest point at 2300m, which shows the difficulty of the trek. On top of this they also had to deal with catching a nasty jungle bug, deadly spiders in tents and minor altitude sickness!

The twenty BU students involved in the trek had to raise £3000 each for the AICR charity in eight months, as Marnie points out they all did very different activities to raise their target amount:

“For example a few things I did was teaching cheerleading to children, car boot sales, a physiotherapy guest speaker event, band nights, newspaper articles, bucket collections and cake sales.”

Marnie & Ben would like to thank everyone who supported their charity fund raising and helped to make their trip an amazing success:maccu-piccu-trek-2

“Overall the experience challenged us in many ways, but it was also one of the most amazing, rewarding and unforgettable. But we could not have done it without your kind support, so thank you…As a team from Bournemouth University our total was £59,500! It took a lot of hard work and determination throughout the year, but thanks to your support we made it!”

Later on this year they will be visiting a laboratory in London, to meet the cancer research doctors who will be using the money they raised in their research, which will help to advance the diagnosis and treatment for cancer patients.

If you are interested in taking part in the RAG challenge there are three challenges running this year, you can find out more about these by visiting SUBU and asking for the RAG team.

Student volunteers collect 1.5 tons of food for local foodbanks


Student volunteers from Bournemouth University collected 1.5 tons of food and hundreds of pounds for local foodbanks during a day-long charity event.

The Big Feed was organised by the Students’ Union at Bournemouth University (SUBU) to collect much needed donations for foodbanks in the area.

Around 50 students split into teams and spent the day at seven supermarkets across Bournemouth and Poole, competing to collect the most food donations.

They managed to collect over 1.5 tons of food – including 324 cartons of UHT milk, a food staple particularly needed by foodbanks – along with more than £1,113 in cash donations.

Sandy Williams, coordinator of the community food bank in Kinson, said: “It’s amazing. They have done brilliantly and it means an awful lot.

“Our supplies were running so low that we couldn’t make up a single complete pack. We specifically asked for UHT milk as a priority so it is really exciting seeing all of the milk they’ve collected.”

Food banks in the Bournemouth and Poole area have seen a huge rise in demand this year, helping more than 2,000 people since January – a 36 per cent increase on the same period last year.

Mark Elling, events manager for the Trussell Trust charity which runs the foodbanks, said the students’ contribution would make a big difference.

“The food that’s been collected will make a massive difference to help people who are currently in crisis,” he said.

“The day has been absolutely brilliant – it has been extraordinary being out and about seeing students engaging with members of the public and customers being very generous.”

A celebratory ceremony was held in the evening, with prizes and awards for the students who took part.

The team of students who collected the most food won £100 in Waitrose vouchers, a food hamper and a night at BU nightclub The Old Fire Station.

Second year Multi-Media Journalism student Alys Penfold was part of a team who collected at the Alder Road Sainsbury’s supermarket in Poole.

“I was really surprised by how generous people were – we managed to fill four trollies and people were giving us two or three bags of food,” said Alys, 19, who lives in Winton.

“It was exciting to be part of something that was going on for the whole day and we had a laugh trying to think of creative ways to get people to donate.

“It makes you feel good because you know it is going towards something really important.”

To find out more about SUBU volunteering opportunities visit The Hub website.

Students take on videogame marathon to raise money for charity


Students from Bournemouth University aim to raise £2,000 for charity by playing video games continuously for a week.

The group of around 20 students will take it in turns to play the Zelda computer games in The Atrium, on BU’s Talbot Campus.

They started at 1pm on Monday and will finish on Sunday April 14, with the games being played 24 hours a day.

They are holding the event to raise money for GamesAid, which supports various children’s charities, including improving access to gaming and technology.

“They help disabled people who can’t use controls to play games by adapting them especially for them,” said Mike Warner, a second year BSc (Hons) Software Engineering student, who has organised the fundraiser.

“It’s about making them accessible for everyone.”

The group are playing the games on a number of large screens on The Atrium, and people can also watch a live stream of the players on a website created by Mike.

They aim to complete all 12 Zelda titles in the 212 hours they will be playing.

“Lots of people have come around to see what is going on,” said Mike, 26, of Wimborne.

“I was up late before we started because I was finishing off the website, so I’m already behind on my sleep, but I’m not worried about getting bored of it as each game is really different.”

He added: “We probably won’t have time to finish them all, but it is worth a go.”

Mike attempted the challenge with friends in 2011, and raised £1,312 for GamesAid.

He said: “When I raised money for them last time, I met the people behind GamesAid and it was really impressive seeing first-hand what they have done.

“This year, we want to raise £2,000.”

To watch the live stream of the Zelda marathon and donate visit: