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Pronoun, Ally and Proud badges available for free on both campuses.

contact aisling@dcusu.ie

LGBTQ+

DCUSU is committed to embracing the diversity of our LGBTQ+ students and allies. At DCU, students are encouraged to explore their identities and take time to find themselves; no matter what shape, size, sexuality, gender or appearance that comes in! This past summer, DCUSU attended Dublin Pride, Belfast Pride, Galway Pride and the rst Dublin Trans Pride. Along with that, we have been working closely with DCU LGBTA - our resident student LGBTQ+ (and allies!) society – on ensuring LGBTQ+ students have the space to be themselves and ourish. As the home to the largest student-organised drag competition in Ireland and one of the first universities to introduce gender-neutral bathrooms, DCUSU recognises the vibrancy of our LGBTQ+ community and the importance of supporting students that identify with it. For the rst time, DCUSU are excited to announce Rainbow Week! Rainbow Week will be organised alongside DCU LGBTA to bring week-long events to DCU students highlighting LGBTQ+ identities, sexual health, entertainment, rainbows, unicorns, and all of the other good stuff.

 

Mental Health

If you are experiencing mental health issues, or you are concerned about your own or a friend’s mental health, the first points of contact in the university should be your welfare of centre, the counselling service or the health service. You can contact Aisling at aisling@dcusu.ie and she will listen, and will help point you in the right direction. Always remember that you are not alone, and that talking is a sign of strength. These services all provide con dential, non- judgemental support - no matter what problems you’re facing or where you are, there will be someone available to offer you support. Look after yourselves, and look out for your people. Eating healthily, drinking less, getting good sleep, removing negative people from your life, doing some exercise and adding friends to your cup of tea can always help, even if it’s just a little bit.

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Physical Health

Physical health is hugely important. Some of the best ways to help look after your physical health include healthy eating, physical activity and good sleep. Why not join the gym on campus? DCU Sport offers state of the art facilities incorporating health and wellness to meet all your exercise and leisure needs. DCU Sport comprises the University Sports Complex, the DCU Sports Grounds and our 5-a-side Soccer Centre. We have a wide range of facilities at the University Sports Complex, including pool, tepidarium, sauna, steam room, spa pool, sports halls and studios as well as a fitness centre with over 100 pieces of equipment! The DCU student academic year membership is €205. This membership gives you access to gym facilities on the DCU Glasnevin AND St Patrick’s Campus. We also have a High Performance Centre (fancy or wha?), which is designed to assist and develop elite athletes in all aspects of training. DCU has over 140 clubs and societies too, ranging from ladies rugby, to golf, to mens soccer, to trampolining to athletics to archery. Keep an eye out for them at our Clubs & Socs days!

 

Healthy Eating

Top Tips for Cheap Healthy Eating

  • Never skip breakfast

  • Plan for healthy snacks (fruit, nuts, etc.)

  • Drink lots of water – get yourself a good BPA free water bottle

  • Leave out sugary drinks (including energy ones) – save your calories for something you can get your teeth into & really enjoy!

  • Fill half your plate with vegetables or salad Lean meats are the way to go

  • Buy seasonal – grab supermarket yers & and out what’s on offer as you shop

  • Learn one or two easy dishes to start with, cook in bulk & freeze

  • Get some inspiration from a reputable blogger, they can really improve your knowledge & skill base as well as your motivation

 

Alcohol

For some people when they come to college, all they think of is the freedom and late night parties; there can be an element of this if you want, and it can be a very enjoyable part of the student experience, but it is important to know your limits.

Here are a few tips for a successful night out

  • Eat a meal before you go out.

  • Stay hydrated. Water will also help the hangover.

  • Drink at your own pace. Don’t overdo it at pre-drinks.

  • If you don’t want to drink, just don’t!

  • Go out with friends and get that taxi home together.

  • Don’t take drink off a stranger.

 

Drugs

If you’re smart enough to make it to college, you will also be smart enough to know that drugs are very bad for you. DCU has a zero- tolerance policy to drugs, they are illegal and DCUSU most certainly does not condone them. However, it is important to acknowledge that drugs are out there, and It’s important to have the right information should you plan on taking them.
You can never tell exactly what an illegal drug contains. There is no safe level of illicit drug use, but should you plan on taking them, visit drugs.ie for further guidance.

Addiction symptoms checklist

  • Talk to a health care provider if you experienced two or more of these symptoms in the last year.

  • Often taking more of the substance for a longer period than intended.

  • Ongoing desire or unsuccessful efforts to reduce use.

  • Great deal of time spent to obtain, use or recover from substance.

  • Craving the substance.

  • Failing to fulfill obligations at work or college as a result of continued use.

  • Continued use despite ongoing social or relationship problems caused or worsened by use.

  • Repeated use in physically dangerous situations (i.e. drinking or using other drugs while driving).

  • Continued use despite ongoing physical or mental health problems caused or worsened by use.

  • Developing a tolerance, feeling less effect from the substance with continued use.

  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms after reducing use.

 

Sexual Health

Sex is class. It can be an expression of love or lust, it can be passionate or meaningless, it can be pleasurable or just plain painful! Sex should always be practiced safely, and in a safe environment. You should only ever have sex if you really feel ready, whether it’s your first time, or you’ve done the deed plenty of times before. On a lighter note, be yourself, know you’re not under any pressure to be having constant sexy-time like they make out college life to be like in movies. That is just not how it is. If you do decide to participate in some sexy-time, be safe, enjoy yourself, and always make sure both parties have consented.

STI’s (Sexually Transmitted Infections) are zero craic. Signs you gotta head to the DCU Health Centre for a FREE STI check include; good ole itchiness down there, discharge, peeing hurting a lot, OR there could be absolutely no symptoms at all! So, wearing that good ole protection and getting checked often is essential to avoid those bad boys. As they say, don’t be silly, wrap that willy.

Contraception is the key to avoiding these nasty STI’s, and, let’s not forget the big one - pregnancy. There are many different types of contraception, here are a few of the most common;

Condoms

Available for free in the SU

The Pill

Is a daily tablet available on prescription from your GP.

Diaphragm

Placed inside the vagina so that it prevents the sperm from getting into the uterus.

The Contraceptive Implant

The implant is inserted in the arm by a healthcare specialist and must be removed after three years.

Emergency Contraception

(aka. The Morning After Pill) is available in the pharmacy on campus. You should take it ideally within 24 hours after unprotected sex (this offers over 95% protection). The longer you wait, the less effective it will be. After 72 hours (3 days) the effectiveness drops to below 50%. Always note, that no contraceptive is 100% reliable, and some can have side effects.

 

Consent

Consent Definition; permission for something to happen or agreement to do something.

Consent is essential for absolutely everything, sure no one wants to be forced to do anything that they don’t want to do, ESPECIALLY when it comes to sex. You gotta make sure that consent is enthusiastic, sober, ongoing, mutual and freely given. To simplify things, imagine instead of initiating sex, you’re making someone a cup of tea. You say “hey, would you like a cup of tea?” and they go “omg yes, I would LOVE a cup of tea! Thank you!” then you know they want a cup of tea. If you say “hey, would you like a cup of tea?” and they say, “I’m not really sure...” then you can make them a cup of tea or not, but be aware that they might not drink it, and if they don’t drink it then – this is the important bit – don’t make them drink it. You can’t blame them for you going to the effort of making the tea on the off-chance they wanted it; you just have to deal with them not drinking it. Just because you made it doesn’t mean you
are entitled to watch them drink it. If they say “No thank you” then don’t make them tea. At all. Don’t make them tea, don’t make them drink tea, don’t get annoyed at them for not wanting tea. They just don’t want tea! If they are unconscious, don’t make them tea. Unconscious people don’t want tea and can’t answer the question “do you want tea?” because they are unconscious. Unconscious people don’t want tea. (Tea Consent by RockstarDinosaurPiratePrincess) Whether it’s tea or sex, never ever assume. Consent Is Everything. Consenting to one act is not consenting to all acts. DCUSU will be holding consent classes during Semester 1, Week 2; GLA Monday – Thursday and SPC Tuesday & Wednesday and are essential for all Freshers!

 

Pregnancy

If you think that you are pregnant, the first step is to perform an official pregnancy test with a GP. Should you require any guidance, your Students’ Union Officer or DCU SS&D will always be there for you. Free pregnancy tests are available up in the SU.

Continuing the Pregnancy

Managing a pregnancy is a long and challenging process. It might be tough but is important to speak to friends and family, who will be able to offer support and guidance. Should you require any guidance, your Students’ Union Of cers or DCU Student Support & Development will always be there for you.

Adoption

Adoption is the process whereby a child becomes a member of a new family. It creates a permanent, legal relationship between the adoptive parents and child.

Abortion

Although the recent referendum to repeal the Eighth Amendment passed, it has not taken legal effect yet, with the forecasted date being in 2019. So, at the time of writing, abortion in Ireland is still currently illegal. There are still options though, many women travel abroad every year to terminate pregnancy. You can find further information on crisis pregnancy and all of the above routes at positiveoptions.ie.