Help at hand over GCSE results

As thousands of young people in the UK prepare to leave home for university, charity YouthNet, which runs online guide to life TheSite.org, has put together some top tips to help this season’s freshers navigate their way through the first term.

TheSite.org provides straight-talking information, advice and guidance covering anything and everything a young person might need to know from relationships, emotional wellbeing, work and study, to drink and drugs. It also features an expert question and answer service and a thriving online community of users.

Matt Whyman, relationships advisor for TheSite.org said: “There’s a huge amount to be considered on a practical level when starting university, which, coupled with the emotional strain of leaving loved ones behind can be very overwhelming .”

“TheSite.org is there to provide advice and support and help young people to cope with the pressures but also make the most out of their time as a fresher.”

Top tips from TheSite.org…

· If you’re feeling homesick, always remember that your friends and family are only a phone call away. Skype, email and social media are great for staying in touch. Usually, homesickness is forgotten about as you immerse yourself into university life.

· If you’re in a relationship before going to uni, make sure you are being realistic about what’s involved if you are planning to stay together. It’s pretty hard work to keep a long-distance relationship going so make sure you trust each other before deciding to make such an important commitment.

If you’re unhappy with your course or you’re finding it too difficult, talking to your lecturers, family and friends can really help. If you are really struggling, think about looking into other courses or qualifications that are more suited to you.

Buy a basic cookbook, bring basic cleaning supplies and if you are going out a lot make sure you give your body time to recover to ensure you don’t get ill.

· Make sure you’re aware of your cash flow, what’s going into your bank and what’s going out, for example loans and accommodation fees. Make a budget and stick to it, that way you’ll avoid having to live off baked beans for a whole month before your next loan instalment.

And finally…Don’t be afraid to ask for help. From new friends, to lecturers, student reps, there will always be people available to listen and lend a hand, and anything you’re struggling with, it’s most likely that your new friends with be worrying about them too.

TheSite.org, run by charity YouthNet, provides straight-talking, anonymous information and advice 24 hours a day, on subjects including work & study, drink & drugs, and sex & relationships. Its bespoke question and answer service, askTheSite, provides young people with a confidential, personal answer to any question within three working days.