Sexual Assault Awareness Month – April 2012

Although the month of April is coming to a close, we want to share with you a note from Amy Cavender, MyStudentBody Implementation Specialist, about Sexual Assault Awareness Month. The tips below for programming can also be used year-round to raise awareness of this important issue on college campuses.

In April, schools all over the country observe Sexual Assault Awareness Month with educational events, media campaigns, and forums for survivors of assault. MyStudentBody makes information and resources for understanding and preventing sexual assault and other forms of sexual violence available year-round, both in the Essentials course and in articles and tools in the Student Center.

By sharing this information with students early in their college careers, colleges and universities can give students useful tools to prevent sexual violence and to help themselves and others if they experience an assault or find themselves in an abusive relationship. You can use the information gathered through student Sexual Violence Rate Myself assessments to guide your approach to the issue on your campus.

MyStudentBody works best as part of an overall prevention and awareness campaign. You can find information about raising awareness and preventing sexual violence in our library.

For more ideas on how to address sexual violence prevention on your campus, the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC) offers a wonderful clearinghouse of resources on its Sexual Violence Awareness Month site. NSVRC is using a variety of approaches to communicate about the issue, from videos to Twitter-based chats to printable materials. There’s a great resource page that has everything from suggested events to templates for letters to the editor of the student or local media.

As a former member of the Primary Prevention Planning Team at the Hays-Caldwell Women’s Center in San Marcos, TX, I was especially glad to see that NSVRC offers an information sheet about working with men’s groups to prevent sexual violence. Working with men to prevent sexual violence is an issue that’s dear to my heart, as well as an effective strategy. I hope these resources will help make your sexual violence awareness and prevention activities more successful.

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