April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM). This year the Center for Student Wellness has chosen the theme “I Hear You,” which allows the opportunity to reflect on how the campus support survivors and provides space for them to ask for help. This is an opportunity to recognize and emphasize the importance of listening to and believing survivors while providing resources that exist both on and off campus. Being present for survivors empowers them to seek healing in the manner that they need.
Change is needed in institutions at local, state, national and international levels to support survivors and reduce the harmful actions of perpetrators. The needed changes unfortunately take collective time and effort from a multitude of individuals. The hope is that the awareness of sexual assault emphasized during the month of April will not be contained to this month alone, but will continue to grow year-round and lead to increased advocacy throughout the lives of all University of Utah Students in their current and future communities.
The Center for Student Wellness will be hosting events to connect socially, educate on how to support the survivors around us, and advocate for change in our communities. #UofUSAAM is a time to become aware of and reflect on the skillsets we have and how we can utilize them to minimize sexual assault on campus and support survivors. The capacity for the Center for Student Wellness to listen to survivors is not limited to the month of April as the Victim Survivor Advocacy program functions year-round for students, faculty, and staff who have experienced interpersonal violence.
The entire campus community is encouraged to engage in sexual assault awareness throughout the month of April. Together we are strong, powerful, and resilient. Please use the following hashtags to follow along and join our efforts online: #IHearU #UofUSAAM #SAAM2022.