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14 June 2018 Photo iStock
Dealing with the trauma of sexual assault

University life is supposed to be one of the most enjoyable times of a person’s life. Unfortunately, for some this is the time they may fall victims to sexual assault.
 
The term sexual assault has shockingly become normalised in society and has become a common threat to university students. The University of the Free State (UFS) through its sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, and sexual violence policy strongly condemns any form of sexual abuse. Dr Melissa Barnaschone, Director at Student Counselling and Development (UFS) says the university cares for the health and wellbeing of students and provides necessary support for victims of sexual assault and trauma.
 
It is unfortunate that sexual assault comes with many misconceptions that often shift responsibility and blame from the perpetrator to the victim. “It is important to always remember that it is not your fault; do not blame yourself,” says Dr Barnaschone. Helpguide.Org: Trusted guide to mental & emotional health says sexual assault leaves psychological wounds and sometimes long-lasting health challenges. Such trauma can severely affect a person’s ability to cope with daily academic, social, professional, and personal responsibilities.
 
Any sexual violence is a crime and as a victim, you are not to blame. Healing is achieved when you start to believe that you are not responsible for what happened to you. Visit Helpguide.Org for more information on post-traumatic stress disorder, trauma recovery tips and other related topics.

On this video clip, Dr Barnaschone shares some guidelines to deal with sexual assault and trauma: 

News Archive

UFS partner in first HDCA conference in Africa
2017-09-05

Description: HDCA read more Tags: Human Development and Capability Association, University of Cape Town, HDCA conference, Prof Melanie Walker 

The HDCA conference will take place at the University of
Cape Town from 6 to 8 September 2017.
Photo: Supplied


Academics from the University of the Free State are conference partners in the 2017 Human Development and Capability Association (HDCA) conference taking place from 6 to 8 September 2017 at the University of Cape Town. It is also the first time the conference is held on the African continent. 

Prof Melanie Walker from the Centre for Research on Higher Education and Development at the UFS serves on the local organising committee, as well as on the programme committee for the conference.

Conference theme and context 
The theme for this year’s conference is Challenging inequalities: Human development and social change. The annual conference is a collaborative effort between the Universities of the Free State and Western Cape as well as the Human Science Research Council. It is supported by the National Research Foundation (NRF). 

The conference is held at a key and historic moment for the continent and for South Africa – economically, socially and politically – offering the possibility to bring the approach to the attention of wider audiences of researchers, young scholars, practitioners, and policy- makers/brokers.

Click here for the conference programme

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