OVERVIEW 

The Report and Support Team ran a series of events to mark national Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week 2022. These events showcased the remarkable work of individuals and groups working in the field or who have implemented strategies, campaigns, and initiatives to combat sexual violence and abuse. Our goal was to raise awareness around these topics, generate discussion among our communities, and break down the silence and stigma that surrounds sexual abuse and sexual violence, so that survivors can feel empowered to disclose their experiences and seek support. 

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EVENT 1: Monday, 7th February 2022, 4-6:30pm, online
An Overview of Current and Emerging Research at the University of Warwick

We explored current and emerging research at the University of Warwick on sexual abuse and sexual violence in the UK and around the world. Sexual abuse and sexual violence are endemic in our society. The University of Warwick has increasingly become a hub for academic discussion around these topics and is actively leading national and international conversations through ground-breaking research and collaborative projects. From PhD students to established academics, our community is standing up to sexual abuse and sexual violence.

Speakers included:
lanaire Aderemi (PhD Researcher, Warwick Writing Programme): Daughters of Disobedience: How Nigerian Feminists Are Using Twitter As a Tool for Storytelling, Resistance and Solidarity

Katherine Stone (Associate Professor, School of Modern Languages and Cultures): Telling Stories about Conflict-Related Sexual Violence: The Role of Art in Combatting Stigma, Raising Awareness, and Shifting Understanding

Alice King (PhD Researcher, School of Law and Lecturer in Law, South Bank University): “They literally said, we don’t want to ruin the precarious reputation of our university. Like it’s just so elitist. It’s disgusting” – Exploring Student Attitudes Towards Responses to Sexual Violence in Elite UK Universities

Cath Lambert (Associate Professor, Sociology), Roxanne Douglas (Teaching Fellow, English and Comparative Literary Studies), and Sian Williams (Participation & Digital Development Director for Vincent Dance Theatre): Creative and Interdisciplinary Spaces for Addressing Harassment: Virgin Territory/Shut Down at University
(https://warwick.ac.uk/services/dean-of-students-office/community-values-education/vdtdraft/).

Event 2: Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 12-1pm, online
Supporting Survivors (Online) – How to safely receive and signpost disclosures of sexual violence
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The Report and Support Team ran two workshops, one online and one in person, which guided the Warwick Community (both students and staff) through the process of receiving and signposting a disclosure of sexual violence. The session hoped to empower individuals to be able to support friends, colleagues or members of societies/sports clubs who have been affected by sexual violence, and hopefully reassure them that support is available.  

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Event 3: Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 6-7:30pm, in-person, SO.19, Social Sciences Building
Breaking Down Barriers: A Discussion Space for Women of Colour - in collaboration with The Black Women's Project

Whilst research on the barriers people face to disclosing Sexual Misconduct is growing; much of this research has failed to acknowledge the ways in which race can present an additional, complex barrier to disclosure for black women & women of colour. On a national level, specialist services for women of colour are historically underfunded and under supported, resulting in a gap in support available and a further barrier to disclosure. Informed by research, this Discussion Space was an opportunity for women and non-binary students of colour to collectively explore what barriers we face when disclosing harassment; and allowed us to contribute to the discussion of what effective support might look like in a university context.

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Event 4: Wednesday, 9th February 2022, 7:30-9:30pm, in-person, L3, Science Concourse

Warwick Student Cinema: Trust
Trust was presented on 35mm film on the big screen in L3. Screening and Popcorn were provided for FREE by Warwick SU Projects & Campaigns in order to mark Sexual Violence Awareness week. In collaboration with It Happens Here Society. Annie, a teenager, becomes a victim of cyberbullying and sexual abuse by a middle-aged man. The situation gets complicated when Annie's father realises the truth.

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Event 5: Thursday, 10th February 2022, 2-3pm, in-person, Meeting Room 2 / Kevin Gately Room in SU HQ
Supporting Survivors (In-person) – How to safely receive and signpost disclosures of sexual violence.

The Report and Support Team ran two workshops, one online and one in person, which guided the Warwick Community (both students and staff) through the process of receiving and signposting a disclosure of sexual violence. The session hoped to empower individuals to be able to support friends, colleagues or members of societies/sports clubs who have been affected by sexual violence, and hopefully reassure them that support is available.
 
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