Sept. 10-16, 1999
U.Va. gets $4 million cancer grant
Curry School bringing classroom technology to Bermuda
Improvements made for checking children's hearing

From the desk of. . .Tom Gausvik

Hot Links -- slave life
U.Va. Patents Foundation upgrades operations
Making hospitals safer workplaces
A solution for broken hearts
Free guide offered for sexual assault survivors
Conference on health-care ethics Sept. 16-17

Robertson Media Center open house Sept. 17

Johanna Drucker appointed to media studies chair
Newly digitized language lab makes learning a piece of kuchen

Off the Shelf

Benefit concert for Living Wage Campaign


Free guide offered for sexual assault survivors

By Ida Lee Wootten

A newly reprinted guide offers free help to sexual assault survivors, their families and friends. Published by the Sexual Assault Education Office in the U.Va. Women's Center, the booklet provides guidelines for helping people immediately after an incident as well as throughout recovery. "Handbook for Survivors: A Guide to Surviving Sexual Assault" helps victims and those close to them understand the emotional issues they face and spells out their legal and medical rights.

"The goal in creating the guide is to make sure survivors are fully aware of their rights and have easy access to information that can aid in the healing process," said Claire Kaplan, sexual assault education coordinator at U.Va.

Written in a clear, straightforward manner, the guide gives step-by-step procedures to follow immediately after a sexual assault. It then describes what survivors will face when going to the emergency room and reporting the assault to police. In addition, the guide includes a list of agencies and resources that can help survivors.

One section written for U.Va. and other college students points out that alcohol consumption could lead to sexual assault. The section also provides a list of resources for University students.

More than a dozen people in diverse fields ranging from medicine and counseling to law enforcement contributed information for the guide, first published in 1993.

Local organizations, such as the Sexual Assault Resource Agency, Charlottesville Free Clinic and Department of Social Services, are distributing the guides. At U.Va., several departments, including Student Health, police and the emergency room, offer the guides.

"We want the book to give people the message that there are many allies, many experts to help them," Kaplan said.

She began assembling the first edition of the handbook eight years ago after establishing U.Va.'s Sexual Assault Education Office and realizing that no comprehensive guide existed to help sexual assault survivors. The guide has proved so helpful that many other campuses nationwide have used it as a model, she said.

Funding for the handbook was provided by U.Va.'s Sexual Assault Education Office, the Parents Program of the U.Va. Fund, the Sexual Assault Resource Agency in Charlottesville and the Virginia departments of Criminal Justice Services and Health.

"Handbook for Survivors: A Guide to Surviving Sexual Assault" can be obtained by stopping at or calling U.Va.'s Sexual Assault Education Office. Located within the Women's Center at University Avenue and 14th Street, the office can be reached at 982-2774.


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