View from South Park in the snow across to Oxford's skyline
View from South Park in the snow across to Oxford's skyline

Vacation welfare support

Page last updated: 25 November 2022

Many mental health services are open all year round, while others will have different opening hours or be closed on some days. There are many welfare resources available for you, all of them free and confidential.

The information on this page will help you to find a mental health service whatever time of the day or night.

If you feel lonely, anxious or in distress and want to speak to someone

Nightline
Independent listening, support and information service run for and by students, offering instant messaging, Skype and telephone support. 

How to access
Open 8pm–8am 0th - 9th Weeks in term time and closed for Christmas. Find contact details on the Nightline website.

NHS Mental Health Helpline
Open 24/7, 7 days a week for people in Oxfordshire who need mental health care when their situation is not life threatening.

How to access
Call 111 and find out more on the Oxford NHS website

Student Space
Resources for students, including a student support helpline, online chat, text message and email.

How to access
Call 0808 808 4994 (open 3pm–11am every day), text STUDENT to 85258 24-hours a day and find other contact details on the Student Space website. 

Samaritans
Independent listening service – always available 24/7.

How to access
Call 116 123, write them an email or a letter and use their self-help app - full details on the Samaritans website.

If you want to speak to a mental health professional now

College GP or family doctor (office hours)
Make sure you are registered with a GP in Oxford. College surgeries are open throughout the Christmas vacation except Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Years Day and weekends.
Please speak to them before you leave for the Christmas vacation if you are struggling so they can help to support you. Check your surgery website for opening hours and out-of- hours services. If you are away from Oxford you may be able to access treatment locally as a temporary patient.

NHS Mental Health Helpline
Open 24/7, 7 days a week for people in Oxfordshire who need mental health care when their situation is not life threatening.

How to access

Call 111 and find out more on the Oxford NHS website

Safe Haven
Oxford Safe Haven offers short-term additional support out-of-hours for people in Oxfordshire, who are experiencing a mental health crisis including suicidal thoughts.

How to access
Call 01865 903 037, open 7 days a week, 6–10pm offering face to face and phone crisis support. Safe Haven is located at the Manzil Resource Building, Entrance 2, Manzil Way, Oxford, OX4 1XE and you can email oxonsafehaven@oxfordhealth.nhs.uk

Togetherall
The Counselling Service has teamed up with Togetherall (an NHS-approved service) to provide mental health support 24/7 to students, wherever you are in the world. Togetherall provides space to connect with other students through online forums, advice and structured self-learning courses. If you are a registered user, you can also talk online to a mental health professional using the ‘message a wall guide’ feature.

How to access
This service is available all year round to all students for free, 24/7, 365 days. To join, register under “I’m from a university or college” with your Oxford email address.

If you want to access counselling or therapy

The Counselling Service
The University's Counselling Service is not an emergency service. We will see you as soon as possible, but cannot provide instant access to a mental health professional. Please refer to other resources on this page if you need instant or out-of-hours support. The Counselling Service closes from 21 December and reopens on 3 January.

How to access
During term (Weeks 0-9) reception is open 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday, with pre-arranged appointments available until 8pm Monday-Thursday. During vacation periods (Weeks 10 to -1) the Service operates between 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday Email counselling@admin.ox.ac.uk for an appointment.

Talking Space Plus
TalkingSpace Plus is a free, confidential NHS service available to anyone over the age of 18, registered with a GP in Oxfordshire. Aimed at people experiencing common conditions including stress, anxiety and depression.

How to access
Call 01865 901 222, Monday 8am-5pm, Tuesday to Thursday 8am-8pm or Friday 8am-5pm, or complete an online referral form anytime or get a referred from your GP/Healthcare professional. 

If you feel unsafe or suicidal

Safe Haven
Oxford Safe Haven offers short-term additional support out-of-hours for people in Oxfordshire, who are experiencing a mental health crisis including suicidal thoughts.

How to access
Call 01865 903 037, open 7 days a week, 6–10pm offering face to face and phone crisis support. Safe Haven is located at the Manzil Resource Building, Entrance 2, Manzil Way, Oxford, OX4 1XE and you can email oxonsafehaven@oxfordhealth.nhs.uk

NHS Mental Health Helpline
Open 24/7, 7 days a week for people in Oxfordshire who need mental health care when their situation is not life threatening.

How to access

Call 111 and find out more on the Oxford NHS website

If you need urgent medical treatment

If you are in a mental health crisis and need immediate medical treatment for an overdose or serious self-harm, you should attend your local Emergency Department (A&E). In Oxford this at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Headington.

How to access
Headley Way, OX3 9DU. Call 999 or to speak to the hospital reception dial 01865 740 400.

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