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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 and Free State department of Agriculture take hands
2007-04-02

During the visit to the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences of the University of the Free State (UFS) were, from the left: Mr Casca Mokitlane (Member of the Executive Committee for Agriculture in the Free State), Prof. Herman van Schalkwyk (Dean of the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences at the UFS) and Mr Tshepiso Ramarakane (Head of the Department of Agriculture in the Free State).

Photo: Stephen Collett
 

There is a need for the University of the Free State (UFS) and the Free State Department of Agriculture to work together as partners to pursue the development of agriculture in the province.

Prof. Herman van Schalkwyk, Dean of the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences at the UFS and Mr Casca Mokitlane, Member of the Executive Council (MEC) in the Free State, recently held investigative discussions to determine how a more focused strategic leadership for the development of agriculture in the province can be established.

Mr Mokitlane visited the faculty on the Main Campus in Bloemfontein and exchanged information with Prof. Van Schalkwyk on development issues in agriculture. Certain important agricultural issues between the faculty and the department was identified in order to build a more vibrant and sustainable agricultural industry in the province.

A few issues that would contribute to the building of relationships for sectoral development such as agricultural research, the training of small farmers and the department’s guidance officers, the support of community projects and targets for the land reform process were also discussed.

Mr Mokitlane visited nine departments within the faculty, among others the Lengau Agricultural Training Centre, where he had short discussions with prospective black farmers.

According to Prof. Van Schalkwyk thorough training of black emerging farmers was discussed. It was clear to him that small farmers who have already completed their training are a priority for the faculty. Further discussions will continue at a later stage.

Mr Mokitlane was also informed about the research done at the faculty, training programmes offered and the roles the different divisions are playing in terms of community service. Postgraduate students informed the delegates of their specific research and studies.

“We have great appreciation for the time Mr Mokitlane and his colleagues from the Department of Agriculture spent listening to what the faculty can do for agriculture in the Free State and also the rest of the country,” said Prof. Van Schalkwyk.

“Both parties are in agreement that the one cannot function without the other. We must move closer to each other in the interest of agriculture to face the challenges ahead,” said Prof. Van Schalkwyk.

Media release
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: loaderl@ufs.ac.za
30 March 2007

 

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