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Rockwell event tackles attitudes towards mental health

students at UEL

The Student Union bar on UEL’s Docklands campus was the unlikely venue for a ground-breaking event encouraging people to rethink their attitudes to mental health.

‘Rockwell’ was a collaboration between the East London NHS Foundation Trust (ELFT) and UEL’s School of Psychology.

This event featured live bands Stone Cold Buffalo and Redstar Lokomotiv, which was made up of members of ELFT staff. There was also music from UEL student DJ, JG.

The audience brought together students, people who use mental health service and ELFT staff.

One of the organisers was UEL student Eileen Ward. In the second year of her Clinical and Community Psychology degree she enjoyed a work placement period at the Trust.  It was the idea of Trust manager Paul Binfield and her lecturers Dr Mike Chase and Dr Sharon Cahill, to put on a music event to change attitudes.

“The motivation behind the gig was simply about bringing people together - staff, students and service users - via music, to break down traditional barriers and stigma,” explained Paul Binfield.  Or to summarise it more succinctly, “‘no clinical discussion, no risk assessments, no medication; just fun and music.’ ”

Eileen felt the night was a great success and more than achieved its goals.

“It was a great networking evening which has given more depth to the applied principles of my degree,” she said.

“There was lots of enthusiasm and positive energy in the bar and everyone that attended had a great evening. You couldn’t tell who was a student, who was NHS staff, and who was a service user.  Most people were just asking when the next event would be.”

The Rockwell team are looking forward to developing the concept and running new events in the next academic year.

Notes to Editors

The University of East London (UEL) is a global learning community with students from over 120 countries world-wide. Our vision is to achieve recognition, both nationally and internationally, as a successful and inclusive regional university proud of its diversity, committed to new modes of learning which focus on students and enhance their employability, and renowned for our contribution to social, cultural and economic development, especially through our research and scholarship. We have a strong track-record in widening participation and working with industry.