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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 in new partnership with the Vrije University of Amsterdam
2011-11-17

 

Proff. Lex Boutler (left) from the Vrije University of Amsterdam and Jonathan Jansen are signing an institutional Memorandum of Understanding. Prof. Boutler was part of a delegation that visited the campus two weeks ago.

A delegation from the Vrije University of Amsterdam (VUA) visited the UFS two weeks ago to discuss and sign an institutional Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the VUA and UFS.

The MOU follows after academics have collaborated on a number of research projects between the Faculties of Theology and the International Institute for Studies in Race, Reconciliation and Social Justice to create a firm foundation for the two universities to strengthen their collaborative efforts towards achieving academic excellence.
 
Another initiative that was discussed was the possibility of a joint PhD project and mobility scholarship through the South Africa-VU Amsterdam Strategic Alliances (SAVUSA) and Stimulating Knowledge Innovation through Life-long Learning (SKILL) programme earmarked for UFS and VUA staff and Master’s and PhD graduate students.
 
The VUA delegation also had an opportunity to meet and engage with the UFS F1 students. These students will visit the VUA in January 2012, where they will also visit the Amsterdam University College (AUC).
 
The AUC is an international liberal arts and sciences programme that attracts students from all over the world to engage through intensive seminars on a variety of subjects. 

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