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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

Chitja Twala: leading ANC historian
2017-12-25

Description: Dr Twala spotlight Tags: Chitja Twala, ANC history, history, UFS Department of History 

Dr Chitja Twala is a leading historian on ANC history in the
Free State. Photo: Sonia Small

Dr Chitja Twala is a senior lecturer in the Department of History at the University of the Free State (UFS), Bloemfontein Campus. Dr Twala has a substantial publication record on the history of the liberation movements, with special reference to the African National Congress in the Free State. He is the author of six chapters and has co-authored two in The Road to Democracy in South Africa: Vol. 4 (1970-1990) and The Road to Democracy in South Africa: Vol. 6 (1990-1996), published in 2010 and 2013 respectively. Dr Twala has a PhD in History from the UFS.

Dr Twala was part of the first group of the UFS Vice-Chancellor’s Prestige Scholars Programme (PSP). He is currently collaborating with Prof Peter Limb from the Michigan State University in the United States of America on a book project on the history of the ANC in the Free State. He has published numerous peer-reviewed articles in local and international journals. He serves on the editorial boards of the Journal for Contemporary History, Yesterday and Today Journal, and South African Journal of Cultural Studies.

Awards received by Dr Twala:
The National Research Foundation
New frontier in Poverty Reduction and Sustainable Development Funding
Recipient of the Graduate School for Arts and Sciences at the University of Harvard
US Recipient of the National Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences Grant
Awarded the Mellon Foundation Scholarship 2016-2018


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