At Balliol we believe the welfare of our students is paramount, whether you have a serious personal issue you need to sort out or are just feeling down and fancy a chat. The JCR officers in charge of welfare are known as the Dr WHOs and can be contacted either in person, by email, via facebook, or by leaving a note in their pigeon holes - this can even be done anonymously if you want. The Dr WHOs are backed up by Welfare Subcommittee, a team consisting of the Women’s Officers, the LGBTQ Officers, the Ethnic Minorities Officers, the International Students Officer, the Student Disabilities Officer (SDO), the Class Affiliation and First Generation Officers (CAFGO), and the Academic Affairs Officers. We also have a team of dedicated Peer Supporters, who have all received specialist welfare training from the University. Like the Drs WHO, these students can all be approached no matter how big or small you feel your issue is, and unless they feel that your health is in danger they will preserve your confidence absolutely.
The Drs WHO arrange a number of welfare events throughout the year, including JCR teas, film events, discussion groups, and Welfare Week, held in the fifth week of every term and full of all sorts of smaller events.
At Oxford, you’ll also be lucky enough to have two sets of parents! Your subject parents are there to help you with any issue you may have concerning your subject, from reading lists to tutors. They’ll also be the ones who’ll help you through the exam period, from pidging you sugary treats to buying you your first carnation. Your general parents are also there if you need any advice, and will always be more than happy to answer any questions you have.
If you feel uncomfortable speaking to students about your problems, the college also has a number of staff specially trained to help you. The Chaplain, Bruce Kinsey, is always a good place to start, and has an open-door policy, so whatever your problem you’re more than welcome to drop by and talk to him. If you prefer, you can email ahead and he'll be more than happy to arrange a specific time for you. Likewise, the Junior Deans are always around and willing to assist with any problems you're having, whether you want help with something more serious or just a quick chat. The college nurse can help with a wide range of health matters and concerns, and can also advise you on the university’s counseling services, and you can also make an appointment with the college doctors at 19 Beaumont Street if you feel like you need to.
No matter how big or small you feel your issue is, Balliol has an open and welcoming atmosphere that means that there is always someone you can approach, at almost any time of the day or night. Despite our size, we have a reputation as having one of the closest and tightly-knit college communities, and you should never feel like you’ve got no-one to turn to.
Information about the College Nurse and further welfare information can be found here.
Clinic times can be found here.