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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

Conference on chemistry presented at the UFS

INORG2009, the biennial conference of the South African Chemical Institute (SACI), was recently held on the Main Campus of the University of the Free State (UFS) in Bloemfontein. The conference, co-sponsored by the Royal Society of Chemistry: Dalton Division in the UK was attended by some 165 delegates from more than 40 different institutions and 14 countries. The conference focused on pure and applied aspects of inorganic chemistry with industrial (e.g. homogeneous catalysis, separation technology, hydrogen storage, etc.), bio-inorganic and medical and environmental relevance. From the left are: Prof. Jannie Swarts, Department of Chemistry at the UFS and member of the organising committee and plenary lecturer at the conference; Prof. André Roodt, Chairperson of the Department of Chemistry at the UFS and Chairperson of the organising and scientific committees of INORG2009; Prof. Jan Boeyens, University of Pretoria and plenary lecturer; Dr Jaco Erasmus, Delta EMD and session chairperson; Prof. Roger Alberto, University of Zürich, Switzerland and plenary lecturer; Prof. Peter Tasker, University of Edinburgh, Scotland, co-Chairperson of the organising committee and plenary lecturer; and Prof. Peter Comba, University of Heidelberg, Germany and plenary lecturer.
Photo: Stephen Collett

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