Keep up the discussion year round
As this year’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month comes to a close, Crisis Intervention Services is urging everyone to keep discussing this issue throughout the year. In order to prevent sexual violence, we must first shatter the silence around this topic. According to the American Cancer Society and the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, it is more likely for a male to be sexually assaulted than to develop prostate cancer, and it’s twice as likely for a female to be sexually assaulted as to develop breast cancer. We must address this epidemic of violence.
There are ways to combat the prevalence of sexual violence in our society. Open and honest conversations with our adolescent children about healthy sexuality and consent help counteract the inaccurate and destructive messages they see daily in popular media. Cultural change is possible if we refuse to tolerate sexist and victim blaming comments from others, and if we examine ourselves and strive to eliminate those things from our own attitudes.
In addition to providing services for victims, Crisis Intervention Services also has resources and programming that aim to prevent sexual assault. Coaching Boys Into Men is a set of training materials for boys’ sports coaches that teaches them how to start meaningful conversations with their athletes about showing respect on and off the field; CIS provides these materials and technical assistance to any interested coaches free of charge. Mentors in Violence Prevention is a program for middle school, high school, and college-aged youth teens are trained to teach peers how to be positive, engaged bystanders when witnessing situations related to gender-based violence; CIS staff both deliver these sessions and train others to do so.
For more information contact our Sexual Assault Prevention Specialist, Charisa Wotherspoon, at (641) 673-0336 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We don’t have to live in a culture of violence, but in order to change it people need to stand up and speak out. Will you join us in making a difference?