Overcoming the coronavirus THE UP WAY

Overcoming the coronavirus THE UP WAY - and still ensuring that the Finish Line is Yours!

Because I am a UP student I choose to:

  • improve my ability to learn independently;
  • take care of my own health and those around me;
  • use this challenge to grow;
  • continue putting lots of effort into achieving my goals; and
  • stay active on clickUP daily and ensure that I keep up with my work.

Click on the images below to be directed to the relevant page.

Practical things you can do now:

Take care of your health:

  • Continue to eat well
  • Get at least 30 minutes of exercise every day

​Contact your Faculty Student Advisor (FSA) or Student Counselling Services or Student Health Services 

Three important things (visit https://sacoronavirus.co.za/home for more):

1. Don’t panic  

  • 82% of COVID-19 cases are mild: patients only experience a slight fever, fatigue and a cough.
  • The vast majority of people can stay at home and get better without hospital treatment.
  • Only about 6% of patients need intensive care.

2. The most common symptoms are:

  • Cough
  • Fever
  • Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath

If you have these symptoms visit https://sacoronavirus.co.za/2020/03/29/getting-sick-during-lockdown/ 

or find out how you as a student can be assisted by UP by clicking here


3. Tips to protect yourself


Coronavirus contact details

Official Toll Free Call Center
0800 029 999

For frequently asked questions about Covid19 visit https://www.gov.za/coronavirus/faq  

We are here for you!

Contact your Faculty Student Advisor (FSA) or Student Counselling Services or Student Health Services

For all general queries email: [email protected] 

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Maintaining a routine while learning online at home

Working from home during the lockdown period may be challenging as all our regular routines are disrupted. This is the time to take responsibility for your academic success by maintaining your normal routines as much as possible.

How can you do that? You can do it the UP WAY (read more here)

  • If a class would have been scheduled at a certain time, sit down and study the work for that class. Click here to access an example of a daily planner or contact your FSA if you need more assistance.
    • ​Keep on learning!
    • Lecturers will be available in different modes during normal scheduled class time to discuss difficult concepts and answer questions.
    • Find out from your lecturers how you can contact them. Some possibilities are phone calls, emails, a discussion forum in clickUP, and/or Blackboard Collaborate.
  • Visit clickUP daily and use resources on the Internet to keep up with work and to maintain a “work-routine”. Click here for UP’s tips!
  • Wake up at a reasonable time and have a plan to be productive for the day
  • Set aside time for important areas in your life: Academic, social, relationships, healthy eating and exercise and so forth.
  • Create a study cell or WhatsApp study group to help and motivate each other
  • Share resources you may have with others

Let's learn online - find out more here.

Access everything you need to continue learning, without the data costs, through the UP Connect platform. 

​!!! Remember to wake up with a purpose, and to live purposefully, this is the time to be a leader in the space you occupy.


We are here for you!

Contact your Faculty Student Advisor (FSA) or Student Counselling Services or Student Health Services

For all general queries email: [email protected] 

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Dealing with anxiety

We find ourselves in uncertain times; this may cause you to feel anxious. Here are a few things you could do to reduce some of that anxiety.

  • Find one or two official and trustworthy sources and ONLY pay attention to the information and news they share for example the South African Government’s official coronavirus website: https://sacoronavirus.co.za/.
  • If you are well informed, you can avoid or ignore social media panic because you know the facts.
  • Before panicking – check your reliable source for facts.
  • Don’t overdo fact-checking. Read just enough to be informed, too much will cause anxiety.
  • Mindfulness exercises for anxiety
  • Mindfulness is being in the present or in the moment and focussing on your awareness (what do I see, hear, smell, feel).
  • Click here for some good mindfulness activities that may assist in alleviating some of your anxiety. You will find many similar exercises on the Internet.
  • Connect, connect, connect.
  • Lockdown does not mean you have to isolate.
  • Stay connected to friends and family through whatsapp, sms, and social media. You need to hear people’s voices, and they need to hear yours!
  • Stay connected to your lecturers via email and clickUP.
  • Keep in touch with classmates through whatsapp study groups (or something similar).
  • Be kind to yourself.
    • Anxiety is a normal human reaction, especially when things are uncertain.
    • If the one minute you feel that you have your anxiety under control, only to feel anxious again later in the day, relax, this only means you are 100% human.
    • Practice mindfulness again or do some relaxation exercises like deep breathing
  • Control what you can.

In these stressful times, it’s essential to try to manage our own anxiety and do our best not to pass it on to others. We can do this by doing a simple activity called pockets. Fill the following two pockets: 

  • Pocket 1: Things that I can control
  • Pocket 2: Things that I cannot control
  • Now, challenge yourself to focus on Pocket 1 and to LET GO of Pocket 2.

Click on the image below to enlarge the "Things I can/cannot control circle"






















We are here for you!

Contact your Faculty Student Advisor (FSA) or Student Counselling Services or Student Health Services

For all general queries email: [email protected] 

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As you will know by now, anybody can get infected with the coronavirus. In the unfortunate event that you should get infected, you do not need to feel ashamed or guilty.

Remember, you are more than a coronavirus and the chances are excellent that you will recover from this virus: 82% of COVID-19 cases are mild: patients only experience a slight fever, fatigue and a cough (https://sacoronavirus.co.za/).


As responsible UP students and citizens of our beloved country, it is also our duty not to stigmatise others. Here is some vital information shared by UNICEF:


WHY IS COVID-19 CAUSING SO MUCH STIGMA? (Click here for to see the full article)

The level of stigma associated with COVID-19 is based on three main factors:

  1. it is a disease that’s new and for which there are still many unknowns;
  2. we are often afraid of the unknown; and
  3. it is easy to associate that fear with ‘others’.

It is understandable that there is confusion, anxiety, and fear among the public. Unfortunately, these factors are also fuelling harmful stereotypes.



Stigma can undermine social cohesion and prompt possible social isolation of groups, which might contribute to a situation where the virus is more, not less, likely to spread.

This can result in more severe health problems and difficulties controlling a disease outbreak.

Stigma can:

  • Drive people to hide the illness to avoid discrimination
  • Prevent people from seeking health care immediately
  • Discourage them from adopting healthy behaviours

We are here for you!

Contact your Faculty Student Advisor (FSA) or Student Counselling Services or Student Health Services

For all general queries email: [email protected] 

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Living with loved ones in a high-risk group

How can I help loved ones who fall in a high risk group?

Are you caring for a loved one who falls into the high-risk category for Covid19?

According to the South African Government’s website (https://www.gov.za/coronavirus/faq) those at higher risk of contracting the virus include

  • the elderly and
  • individuals with chronic conditions or a compromised immune system. Chronic conditions include high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer and lung disease, among others.

Here’s what you can do (https://www.health.com/news/caregivers-high-risk-family-members-coronavirus):

  1. Make a contingency plan
  2. Resist the urge to visit loved ones in nursing homes and other settings (and during lock down, don't feel guilty if you cannot visit)
  3. Don’t forget about other health conditions

If you suspect that a loved one may be feeling depressed, click here for tips on dealing with the situation.

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Surviving and making the best of the lockdown

Lockdown is here and it is up to each of us to make the most of this time. Here are a few suggestions to make your time pleasant and meaningful.

o   Listen to messages from fellow students (click hereand encourage others.

o   Put together a few playlists – keep them upbeat, relaxing or uplifting and dance because this time, no one is watching.

o   Keep a journal. Journaling is a great way to keep in touch with your feelings and to keep a record to look back on later.

o   Take an online class or download a fun app, for instance learning to redecorate your room.

o   Clean and organise: This is a practical thing that you can control. A neat environment aids clear thought and happy feelings.

o   Meditate for 10-20 minutes each day.

o   Exercise at home. There are many wonderful options.

▪         build your own bootcamp track;

▪         dance to fast-paced music;

▪         do stretch exercises; and

▪         many more.

o   Read. This may be the time to read that book you never have time for! Go on, get lost in a good book, have fun with webtoons or listen to an audiobook (you can even multitask here)

o   Find a hobby and schedule it in your weekly routine. Hobbies could include things such as making art, singing, journaling, gardening or even being useful to others)

o   Learn a new language by using an app such as Duolingo.

o   Watch some feel-good TV (documentaries or movies that make you laugh or that inspire you are great options)

o   Release your inner chef and cook your favourite dish, or learn to cooik something new.

o   Camp in your garden or inside your house – be creative, use bed sheets or blankets if you do not have a tent.

o   Follow your heart – schedule times where you can do anything you want to or nothing at all – don’t feel pressured!


You may also want to watch 15 Self Care Ideas for Coronavirus Quarantine (Selfcare Stay-cation) (https://youtu.be/AQxpQ94Euic)

We are here for you!

Contact your Faculty Student Advisor (FSA) or Student Counselling Services or Student Health Services

For all general queries email: [email protected] 

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Published by Sipho Mphurpi

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COVID-19 Corona Virus South African Resource Portal

To contact the University during the COVID-19 lockdown, please send an email to [email protected]

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