top of page
  • Writer's picturePhil Packer

The Committee of University Chairs support the Row Britannia Leadership Challenge

We are sincerely grateful to the Committee of University Chairs for sending out a Row Britannia Leadership Challenge to every University Chair in the UK;

“The Committee of University Chairs supports the aims of Row Britannia – to be an inclusive, UK-wide, mental health, fitness and wellbeing event for the benefit of students, staff and the wider community. I encourage every University Chair to work with their Vice-Chancellors, and with local College Principals, to engage with this challenge, and to invite and encourage local businesses and partners within their communities to pledge their support and involvement.”

- Chris Sayers, Chair of the CUC

John Rushforth, Executive Secretary of the CUC, sent out the following to every University Chair;

"There is an opportunity for every Chair to position mental health as a strategic priority based on the whole organisation, whole community, approach developed by the Mental Health in Higher Education (MHHE) Advisory Group chaired by Professor Steve West.


MHHE are striving to ensure that the current momentum is driven forward by leaders in the sector, to make the mental health of all students and staff a real priority.

Row Britannia will complement their work and is providing an opportunity for ownership and engagement of leaders.  Your support for student and staff mental health will signal it as priority and deliver an extraordinarily positive message and example to your whole organisation.

Row Britannia is a sector-wide, inclusive challenge to raise awareness and funds for student mental health throughout the UK – it has huge potential to engage your students and staff, your local community and enable a whole-university approach to mental health.

University Chairs have been challenged to secure £12,000 through pledges from businesses. If all 137 University Chairs reach their target, they would raise over £1.5m for Row Britannia’s collaboration of mental health charities who support student and young adult mental health.  Your support will undoubtedly inspire your student body and challenge them to reach their targets.

Your fundraising challenge is to compliment and support your university Vice-Chancellors who have been asked to raise £3,000 through pledges from businesses, host the visiting Row Britannia Team (& British Sporting Icons & Mental Health Ambassadors) and work closely with, and assist, College Principals to secure their pledges from local and regional businesses.  Your collective targets will fund vital and lifesaving support.

Students and staff have been challenged to complete the Row Britannia (2,020mile) Team Challenge. If every university and college registers a team and raises £3,000, collectively they would raise over £1.5m for Sport Relief and match your fundraising target.

“The Mental Health in Higher Education Advisory Group fully supports the aims of Row Britannia and welcomes Phil Packer’s inclusive and inspirational commitment to mental health and wellbeing in colleges and universities. We know that wider leadership engagement is essential to unlock and sustain the positive changes we want to see happen.”

- Professor Steve West, Chair MHHE Advisory Group

Every University Chair who takes on this Leadership Challenge will be added to the list of Higher Education Leaders, on the Row Britannia website, who are championing this initiative and supporting their student’s mental health. 

The Committee of University Chairs support Row Britannia and send out a Leadership Challenge to every University Chair


bottom of page