Sexual Violence Support Guides, a partnership between MacEwan University’s Office of Sexual Violence Prevention, Education and Response and Wellness and Psychological Services, are faculty and staff volunteers from across campus who receive specialized training to assist survivors of and people affected by sexual violence. The program received national recognition as a promising practice within the Courage to Act report in August.
Whether they are professors, advisors or other MacEwan staff members, the support guides are people students encounter every day at MacEwan.
Here’s what you need to know about sexual violence support guides at MacEwan.
Q. What does a sexual violence support guide do?
Sexual violence support guides provide information about campus resources in an empathetic, non-judgmental way to individuals impacted by sexual violence. They also help promote events and initiatives to help educate students, staff and faculty about sexual and gender-based violence.
“We support the message that we believe you and want to empower you to make the choices you need to make,” says support guide Jocelyn Stroebel, a learning specialist with Services to Students with Disabilities. “The bottom line is that consent is a must and we believe you.”
Q. What is involved in becoming a support guide?
Sexual violence support guides receive comprehensive training to develop strong active listening and communication skills. They also learn about MacEwan’s sexual violence policy and procedures as well as all the resources that are available on campus and in the community.
“You don’t have to be a sexual violence support guide to be able to find the resources, which are readily available online,” says Jocelyn. “But if you don’t know where to turn to, support guides can be a starting point where you can ask for guidance.”
Q.Where can I find one?
With 88 active support guides (and growing) across campus, you might not even know when you’re talking to one as you go about your day. Some may have a sign in their office or workspace that indicates they’re a sexual violence support guide, and many work closely with students in their day-to-day commitments. The important thing to know is that if you’re actively looking for resources or you need to talk to someone about an incident, contact the Office of Sexual Violence Prevention, Education and Response.
Everyone deserves support
MacEwan University provides free, confidential information and support for students and employees who have been affected by sexual violence.