Rape Crisis Center launches resource guide for students

Photo/Mike Lovett

Evelyn Milford (left) and Ava Blustein

The Brandeis University Rape Crisis Center (RCC) has developed a new tool for helping survivors of sexual assault connect with the right resources and receive the assistance they need.

Using the survey software Qualtrics, Ava Blustein ’15 and Evelyn Milford ’16, both of whom are former RCC peer advocates, created an online, step-by-step guide for survivors to get immediate help.

Milford said they created the Interactive Resources guide “so everyone would have more access to information that will connect them with reliable resources for reporting, counseling and receiving medical help.”

The Interactive Resource Guide is accessible via the RCC website and contains six parts: assessing immediate danger, medical attention, accompaniment, counseling, accommodations and reporting.

Within each section, the user answers multiple-choice questions regarding their health and safety. The guide then directs users to resources that are designed to help them based on their responses.

For example, the guide can instantly connect survivors with Brandeis Public Safety, the RCC or another local counseling center as well as give instruction on where to go to receive emergency contraception or testing for sexually transmitted infections.

Blustein and Milford also stressed that the guide is completely anonymous and does not store data or private information.

“We wanted to break down barriers to reporting and accessing counseling,” Blustein said. “This gives people more information to make the right decision.”

The two alumnae are hopeful that RCC will continue to improve the guide, particularly when it comes to translating their creation into other languages to help Brandeis’ international community.

“We often hear from students that they’re not necessarily aware of all the resources available to them,” said Sheila McMahon, the sexual assault services and prevention director. “This tool is brilliant because it allows them connect with these resources in private and come to us anytime for help.”

Categories: Alumni, General, Student Life

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