University of Akron organizations have raised awareness of sexual assault issues and services on campus.
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Several campus organizations have created events during this month to raise awareness and provide resources for University of Akron students, faculty, staff, and administrators around the topic.
The organizations that planned the events are Hope and Healing Survivor Resource Center, HOME (Coalition Against Sexual Assault) and TO SAFEGUARD (Education on Sexual Assault and Violence).
Hope and Healing is made up of two nonprofit organizations: the Battered Women’s Shelter and the Rape Crisis Center. CASA is a student organization whose mission is to educate, advocate, and stop sexual violence. SAVE is an on-campus organization that aims to educate and provide services to students, with the organization‘The ultimate goal is to prevent sexual violence.
“Team SAVE encourages every Zip on campus, including students, faculty, staff, and administrators, to be empowered to end sexual violence, that means being an active bystander when you see a potentially dangerous situation. , creating a culture of respect by encouraging consent and calling for victim blaming and offering support to peers affected by sexual violence,” said Kelsea Daniluk, EEO/AA Specialist for the Office of Equal Opportunity employment and affirmative action.
Some events the organizations have planned for April include the Messages to Survivors event, Start Believing Day, Wear Teal Event, Plinko with prizes and bar outreach activities throughout the month.
“We are a group of University of Akron undergraduate and graduate students dedicated and passionate about providing a platform for survivors of sexual assault to reclaim their power, promoting change and empowerment of populations disproportionately affected by sexual violence,” said CASA member Kayla Huff.
On April 27, Denim Day will help raise funds for the cause. Information will be available at the Take Back the Night table, and the day will end with the Take Back the Night walk.
“Engaging students in these activities is extremely important to creating a healthy culture on campus. Sexual assault affects 18-24 year olds at even higher rates than the general population, so giving voice to the issue and raising awareness can make survivors feel supported and help prevent sexual assault,” Elissa Hines said the Campus Direct Service Advocate’s Hope and Healing Survivor Resource Center. “Students care about ending sexual assault, so giving them an outlet to express that and informing them are ways to encourage a culture of consent.”
If you cannot attend these events, there is always an opportunity to participate through donations organized by the SAVE team. Donation items requested include personal care items, toys, coloring books, black hair care products and school supplies. You can find donation boxes located at the University of Akron Jean Howard Taber Student Union.
“I would humbly add that I also believe it is important during the month of April and also throughout the year to take proactive steps to ensure the safest community possible,” said Michael Strong, Dean students. “We all have a role to play and together we can make a difference, a meaningful difference.”