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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

US Consul-General speaks at the UFS
2010-09-23

Mr Andy Passen, US Consul-General, and Mr Arthur Johnson from the Internationalisation Office at the UFS.
Photo: Leonie Bolleurs

The Consul-General of the United States of America, Mr Andy Passen, recently presented a public lecture at the University of the Free State (UFS). He focused on the importance of youth development in the current dispensation and introduced President Barack Obama's Young African Leaders Forum. In his presentation he pressed upon the young leaders that they possessed both the privilege and responsibility to shape the future of Africa for the next 50 years.

He also engaged the UFS as a potential host of the Brown vs Board of Education exhibition, namely Separate is not equal. The exhibition is hosted annually at various cities and higher education institutions in South Africa. The multimedia exhibition uses films, photographs, sound recordings and reconstructions to tell the history of segregation in the USA, the landmark supreme court ruling in Brown vs. Board of Education on 17 May 1954, and the subsequent decades of struggle for racial equality. The exhibition also highlights parallels to the South African experience.

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