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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 Student counselling and Development co-hosts SAACDHE conference
2012-08-31

The Free State region of the Southern African Association for Counselling and Development in Higher Education (SAACDHE), together with the University of the Free State’s Student Counselling and Development, is to host the 33rd annual SAACDHE conference. The conference will be held at a resort at Thaba Nchu from 10 to 13 September 2012.

SAACDHE represents the interests of counselling and development service providers in higher education and facilitates the holistic development of staff in counselling and development centres. Botswana, Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal, Swaziland, North West, Western Cape and Witwatersrand are part of the association.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Back to Basic: Getting in touch with our students today”, which promises to be relevant for professionals who are involved in student counselling and development. Members will attend academic presentations and workshops on topics related to various sub-themes, including career counselling/development - building your brand in a competitive world of work; technology; adjustment (first-generation students); student psychopathology; trends and ethics in student counselling.

Prof. Jonathan Jansen, Vice-Chancellor and Rector of the university will deliver a keynote address at the conference.

For more information, contact Mrs Petro Herbst at 051 401 2853 or HerbstP@ufs.ac.za. Also visit the SAACDHE website at www.saacdhe.org.
 

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