“Mind Ur Money” (MUM) week took place last week to raise awareness about financial assistance funds available to students.
This is the first time the Students’ Union have held such a week. Welfare Officer Rachel Breslin explains that this is the case as there are significantly more people approaching her with financial issues than have approached Welfare Officers in previous years.
The main objective of the week was to raise awareness of the funds available to students who are struggling financially, but also to raise awareness of the part-time job list and “general attitude that you should be out looking for discounts in order to save money and how to go about that”.
Instead of the regular A2 posters, Breslin opted for smaller ones to promote the MUM campaign, “I got smaller ones as they were cheaper to keep the theme”. The posters advertised the various funds that are available to students struggling with financial difficulties, “a fund for emergencies, a fund for unexpected events and there’s a fund for ongoing financial difficulties – for someone that is struggling there is an option out there and that’s the message I wanted to get across during the week”.
The first event of the week consisted of an eleven-foot inflatable discount booth, “we got an eleven foot inflatable discount booth and loads of businesses donated discount vouchers to us so people could enjoy getting in the booth and getting money off”.
Boomerang, a new company aiming to reunite people with their lost belongings, made an appearance on campus to promote their business and initiative. “There has been an issue with people losing belongings like phones or even laptops on campus; the way it works is that there’s a tag and it’s an electronic system, they do a discount for students.”
Breslin made a video to promote the various funds available to students in need, “I made a video which will last long beyond the week; I’m going to put it on the website and keep it going. It seems to have gotten a lot of positive feedback, I’ve been getting a lot of e-mails saying ‘you said in the video that this…’. The video is out there because in the past things like talks have been run but it’s impossible to get everyone who wants the information to the talks or we can’t run a talk every week so I wanted something that can last and that people can get access to”.
Breslin was pleased with the turnout at the various events, “we got different people participating in all of the different things … you got a different sort of people that were coming to the [discount booth], that was a really fun activity”.
A second campaign will run in the second semester, the focus of which will be on part-time jobs.