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If you feel you need urgent help or support you can contact the following services:

  1. Connections – 24 hour local NHS crisis number – 0300 123 5440
  2. Samaritans – 24 hour national listening service – 116 123.

The Student Wellbeing service is run in partnership with Dorset HealthCare University NHS Foundation Trust. It's confidential, completely free and open to all BU students who are experiencing stress, anxiety or low mood. During term-time we're open from Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm. To contact us email

Booking an appointment

Online: You can now self-refer yourself to our service by completing our online Referral form.

Referral form

If you have any initial questions or concerns you can email us at

For more information about what happens when you register, see our FAQs page. If you need help urgently, please view our Help, information and urgent support page.

Drop-in sessions (term-time only)

Student Wellbeing operates a digital drop-in using the video conferencing platform Attend Anywhere. The drop-in runs during term-time from Monday to Friday, 1-2pm. To access this please click this link: and fill in your full name and date of birth.


You will be placed in an online waiting room and an advisor will pick up the call when they are available. The drop-in closes at 2pm, if it is getting close to that time and the advisor is already talking to another student unfortunately it may be that you cannot be seen on that day.  Please either email us on with your query, come to the drop in again at 1pm on the next working day or if you feel you need urgent help or support please contact the services listed at the top of this page.

Wellbeing Advisors

We can offer practical help with issues such as stress, worry, homesickness, panic, sleeping and eating difficulties, lifestyle issues and low mood or anxiety. Your Wellbeing Advisor will help you to access more intensive support if it is needed.

‘The Student Wellbeing team is amazing. These people really know what they are talking about when you go there with any issues. They also understand the different courses and the types of pressures you may face at BU, so use them if you need to’. read more of BU student Patrycja’s blog ‘There’s no shame in asking for help’.

Support from a counsellor

therapy talk

 You can access up to six sessions with a counsellor. Counselling offers a place to talk about and reflect on whatever is troubling you in a safe, supported and confidential environment.


A group of students working

We run regular workshops covering topics such as mood boost, managing worry, self-esteem & communication, managing anxiety & panic, managing your time, goal setting & keeping well, relaxation, improving sleep or exam stress.

'You’re not alone! BU’s got everything from academic and financial support to a little extra help with emotional and medical advice. Please don’t suffer in silence, reach out to BU and the will be able to help'. Read BU student Danielle’s blog on the support services BU can offer​.

Watch a video about our Student Wellbeing service

Information and links to other services

We can help you find and access services supporting a range of issues including eating disorders, drug and alcohol use, sexual health and bereavement.

Please note: Under current funding arrangements, students attending Partner Colleges (including those on BU programmes) are not eligible to use the service. Arrangements are in place for counselling to be provided by the partner colleges.

More support


The Samaritans provide confidential, non-judgemental, emotional support 24 hours a day for people who are experiencing feelings of distress or despair, including those which could lead to suicide. You can call the Samaritans free anytime on 116 123 or, if you are worried about being overheard on the phone, you can email

Samaritans - drop in centre Bournemouth

If you're having a difficult time, struggling with every day life, or worried about someone else, the Samaritans can help you.

You can also visit the Samaritans drop in centre in Bournemouth ​at 1 Durrant Road, BH2 6LE - which is open from 9am-9pm every day, including weekends. It's approximately a 10 minute walk from Bournemouth Square - walk up Richmond Hill, turn left onto St Stephen's Road and take the second right onto Durrant Road - the Samaritans drop in centre is towards the end of Durrant Road, near the A338. See the map for details.

STARS (Support for Sexual Assault, Rape or Childhood Sexual Abuse)

STARS Dorset provides support for people of any age or gender who live, work or study in Bournemouth, Dorset or Poole and who have experienced sexual assault, rape or childhood sexual abuse at any time in their lives. For confidential listening support call our support line on 01202 308855 at the times below. Alternatively, you can email to arrange a zoom drop in with a member of the team. To find out more about our services please visit our website.

Support Line hours:
Mondays 1 – 3pm
Tuesday 1- 3pm
Wednesday 7.30 – 9.30pm
Thursdays 7.30 – 9.30pm
Friday 1 – 3pm
Saturdays 10.30 – 12.30pm


Togetherall logo

Togetherall is an online mental health support service available 24/7, and is completely anonymous so you can express yourself freely and openly. Access to this service is free to all BU students - you'll need to register the first time you use the service but this is really quick to do. Trained professionals monitor the community to ensure the safety and anonymity of all members. 

To sign up simply go to the Togetherall website - and click on the ‘join us’ section were you'll need to enter a few details under the ‘organisation’ section, but all details will remain completely anonymous. You should also set up a username that can't be identified to you. After 6 months you'll receive a reminder from Togetherall with an option to renew your account.

In addition to Togetherall's online community, you will have access to a wealth of useful information and can work through tailored self-help programmes covering topics such as anxiety, sleep, weight management, depression and many more. Visit the Togetherall website for more information or to sign up.

The Retreat

The Retreat provides a safe and welcoming environment for people who have self-identified their crisis and want to access support. It is open to anyone who is 18 and over and lives in Dorset. Currently The Retreat is not open for physical drop ins but are offering online support from 5pm-11pm everyday or you can self-refer via the website.

The Retreat is for people who feel that they are in crisis, are pre-empting a crisis or are seeking support. It is staffed by both peer specialist and mental health professionals and will not offer medication or formal therapy, but will support and promote self-management. There will also be the capacity for mental health professionals working in The Retreat to escalate to further clinical support if required. For more details visit The Retreat website.

image of The Retreat - Bournemouth

The Retreat in Bournemouth is based at Hahnemann House, Hahnemann Road, Bournemouth, BH2 5JW. It's approximately a 10 minute walk from the BIC - walk up Priory Road and turn right onto West Hill Road, and then left onto Hahnemann Road. Or from the Triangle - walk up St Michaels Road, turn right onto Hahnemann Road and then cross over West Hill Road to re-join Hahnemann Road. The Retreat is in the middle section of the road. See the map for details.

image of The Retreat - Dorchester


The Retreat in Dorchester is based at 30 Maiden Castle Road, Dorchester, DT1 2ER. It's approximately a 10 minute walk from Dorchester South train station along Weymouth Avenue. The train from Bournemouth to Dorchester takes around 40 minutes. See the map for details.


Want to talk to somebody but not on campus or in Bournemouth?

If you're not on campus at BU there is a range of services available to you, including access to local support services. See the full information on our FAQs page.

5 Steps to Wellbeing

To help support your health and wellbeing here are five steps that promote emotional and physical good health:

  1. Connect with people around you - Meet new friends through our clubs and societies and social events. The Events Guide in your welcome pack includes a range of activities as well as details of excursions.
  2. Be active - Our sports facilities are for people of all abilities - you can join the gym, try snowboarding, surfing or go to a yoga class.
  3. Keep learning - Your BU experience isn’t just about your course. Learn to play the guitar with our music department or a new language with our Languages@BU programme. Visit an art exhibition at the Atrium Gallery.
  4. Give to others - Participate in Make A Difference (MAD) day or take part in Raising & Giving (RAG) with SUBU or find out about the volunteering opportunities at BU. Taking part in these activities is fun and will make you feel good.
  5. Take notice - Practise mindfulness and learn to recognise what makes you feel anxious. Our Student Wellbeing team offers sessions to help you develop your resilience and deal with life’s issues. Look out for your flat and classmates’ wellbeing too, as they might not like to say if they’re struggling.