OVW's [Office on Violence Against Women] Technical Assistance Program provides training, expertise and problem-solving strategies to meet the challenges of addressing sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking.
Technical assistance projects offer in-person and online educational opportunities, peer-to-peer consultations, on-site technical assistance, and tailored assistance for OVW grantees and potential grantees. In more limited circumstances, OVW's technical assistance projects offer technical assistance to a small number of pilot sites as part of demonstration initiatives or assessments of newly developed training curricula or tools.
OVW is focused on building the capacity of criminal justice and victim services organizations to respond effectively to sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking and fostering partnerships among organizations that have not traditionally worked together to address violence against women.
* Training and Technical Assistance (2019, February 19). In The United States Department of Justice.
You do not need to be an OVW grantee to request and receive Tribal College Campus Technical Assistance
1. Make a request for technical assistance. 2. Ask for help thinking about what a holistic response to sexual violence can look like on your campus; 3. Ask for help looking at your current sexual violence response on campus; 4. Request a review of your policies and protocols for your holistic response to sexual violence; 5. Ask for help developing new strategies; and 6. We can offer much more.
How we work:
Tribal colleges and universities create a space where we can honor our spirits by learning more about our culture while also empowering us to gain more knowledge to create a better, more just world. Red Wind can provide training and technical assistance to all tribal colleges and universities developing and/or implementing a holistic response to sexual assault.
Our technical assistance includes: — 1-to-1 assistance tailored to the needs of your tribal campus; — Webinars covering relevant topics; — Training and facilitated work sessions; — Engaged work session (virtually or onsite) providing planning, developing strategies, assisting with developing your holistic and culturally specific sexual assault response on campus; and — Development of materials to support the Tribal Campus work.
Holistic Intervention and Response to Sexual Violence on Tribal College Campuses
While campus responders need to be ready for any crisis situation, they also need to be prepared to meet many victims/survivors where they are at. This includes responding to students who have experienced sexual violence in the past such as when they were a child, and/or during high school.
Healing from sexual violence is an ongoing process. Triggers can happen at any moment and having a holistic response provides you with the skills to meet survivors/victims where they are at.
Providing a holistic response should include the following: — Advocating for the whole person (mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional); — Traditional supports (ceremonies, medicine, foods, etc.); — Trauma informed; — Victim/survivor centered; — Collaboration between all organizations responding to sexual violence and/or who serve college students — Perpetrator accountability; — Challenging college culture that perpetuates sexual violence; — Policies that reflect being against sexual assault and that clearly define sexual assault; — Prevention programs; — The rights to a person’s sovereignty and autonomy over their body; — Traditional values against gender-based violence, gender and sexuality; and — Is LGBTQIA and Two Spirit inclusive.
More than 5 in 6 American Indian and Alaskan Native Women (84.3%) have experienced violence in their lifetime (Rosay, 2016).
56.1% of American Indian and Alaskan Native women have experienced sexual violence (Rosay, 2016).
More than 4 in 5 American Indian and Alaskan Native men (81.6%) have experienced violence in their lifetime (Rosay, 2016).
27.5% of American Indian and Alaskan Native men have experienced sexual violence (Rosay, 2016).
1 in 5 female students experience sexual violence (Kammer-Kerwick, Wang, McClain, Hoefer, Swartout, Backes & Busch-Armendariz; 2019).
Gender and sexual minorities [LGBTQ&2S] are more at risk to experiencing sexual violence than non-gender and sexual minorities (Kammer-Kerwick et. Al; 2019).
Young adults, especially college and university students, make up a large number of those affected by date rape (Gross, Winslett, Roberts and Gohm; 2006).
Highest reports of rape are seen amongst Native American college women (Gross, Winslett, Roberts, and Gohm; 2006).
74% of rapes are committed by someone the victim knows (Gross, Winslett, Roberts, and Gohm; 2006).
Impact of Sexual Violence
Sexual assault can leave immediate and long-lasting impacts on survivors that they will carry with them as they navigate being students. It is critical to understand how sexual assault impacts students who are survivors of sexual assault. Physical, mental, emotional and spiritual wellbeing can be impacted in many ways.
Physical short-term impacts
Sexually transmitted infections
Changes in sleep patterns
Emotional short-term impacts
A sense of shame
Rigid or a lack of healthy boundaries
Changes in relationships
Mental short-term impacts
Disruption in self-efficacy
Severe mood swings
Spiritual short-term impacts
Loss of interest in traditional activities or activities once enjoyed
Despair about the future
Sense of hopelessness
Sense of identity loss
Long-term impacts of sexual assault
Post-traumatic stress disorder
Rosay, A.B. (2016). Violence Against American Indian And Alaska Native Women And Men: 2010 Findings From The National Intimate Partner And Sexual Violence Survey (NCJ 249736) Washington D.C.: U.S. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs National Institute of Justice.
Kammer-Kerwick, M., Wang, A., McClain, T., Hoefer, S., Swartout, K. M., Backes, B., & Busch-Armendariz, N. (2019). Sexual Violence Among Gender and Sexual Minority College Students: The Risk and Extent of Victimization and Related Health and Educational Outcomes. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 1-28 . doi:10.177/0886260519883866
Gross, A. M., Winslett, A., Roberts, M., & Gohm, C. L. (2006, March). An Examination of Sexual Violence Against College Women. Violence Against Women, 12(3), 288-300. doi:10.1177/1077801205277358
Holistic Intervention and Response
While campus responders need to be ready for any crisis situation, they also need to be prepared to meet many victims/survivors where they are at. This includes responding to students who have experienced sexual violence in the past such as when they were a child, and/or during high school. Healing form sexual violence is an ongoing process. Triggers can happen at any moment and having a holistic response provides you with the skills to meet survivors/victims where they are at.
Providing a holistic response should include the following:
Advocating for the whole person (mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional)
Traditional supports (ceremonies, medicine, foods, etc.)
Collaboration between all organizations responding to sexual violence and/or who serve college students
Challenging college culture that perpetuates sexual violence
Policies that reflect being against sexual assault and that clearly define sexual assault
The rights to a person’s sovereignty and autonomy over their body
Traditional values against gender-based violence, gender and sexuality
LGBTQIA and Two Spirit inclusive
Incorporating Traditional Values
Reflecting on Tribal values on sexual violence is critical when developing a holistic sexual assault response on Tribal College Campuses. Traditional values are our most critical and valuable resources when responding to sexual assault. Here are some ways in which Tribal campuses can incorporate traditional values in a holistic sexual assault response:
Educating faculty, staff, and students of traditional roles of men, women, LGBTQ2S+
Traditional beliefs of LGBTQ2S relatives
Traditional accountability for perpetrators
Traditional ways/knowledge of healing
Bring in an elder advisory council to help guide response
An important and critical piece to consider is how your community traditionally held perpetrators accountable. How can you incorporate the Traditional foundation of accountability into your Tribal college? Prevention without proper accountability will not end sexual assault on campus.
Prevention training and awareness campaigns are important to offer on Tribal college campuses, as prevention is the cornerstone for changing rape culture on campuses and in our communities. There are many resources and toolkits on how to incorporate prevention awareness on campuses.
There is much research demonstrating the need for having a trauma-informed response when working with victims of sexual assault. The way you respond to a victim can either help or re-traumatize them. It is critical that staff who will be responding to victims of sexual assault, be trained in trauma-informed care. This means that staff understands how trauma can impact victims and survivors.
Self Care for Those Responding to Sexual Violence on Campus
Working as an advocate or responder to sexual violence on campus can be intense for most. Burnout and compassion fatigue are terms we often hear about when it comes to sexual violence advocacy. Advocates and responders to sexual violence on campus handle very traumatic situations and can suffer from vicarious trauma. It is critical that there are practices in place that support staff in protecting and healing themselves.
Create practices that encourage employees/peer navigators to prioritize their care (rewards for physical activity, longer breaks for art classes, yoga, etc.); make sure to have health benefits that includes mental health care (therapists, traditional healing care, etc.); make space and time for staff to participate in cultural traditional activities; organize staff space that nurtures and supports staff (plants, dim lighting, comfortable furniture, etc.); and acknowledge that self-care is needed not just for physical health, but mental, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.
This project was supported by Grant No. 2018-TA-AX-K003 awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this publication/program/exhibition are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Department of Justice.