How are you working to #ChangetheCulture to prevent sexual assault? #SexualAssaultAwarenessMonth

I am graduating with my MSW in August and am excited to continue working in prevention and recovery for individuals who have experienced trauma. My work spans multi- media, workshops, expressive arts, consulting, fundraising, and event planning.

Most recently, I completed a clinical internship at Mass Mental Health Center’s partial hospital program providing DBT therapy and psychotherapy groups I also work for a Sexual Abuse Recovery Coach providing and creating supportive online spaces and mentorship to folks in their healing. I believe people who been traumatized are vulnerable to further trauma and so part of prevention work is supporting people in their recovery so they can develop skills to try and protect themselves from additional harm.

Additionally, I’m a co-organizer in a new grassroots initiative called the Survivor Leadership Collective (www.survivorleadership.com) that has been showcasing survivor leadership in the community through open mics and art workshops and exhibits over the past year. I’m part of an art studio Planning Committee, which is creating the first designated space for recovery from childhood sexual abuse. To raise awareness for Sexual Assault Awareness Month as well as Child Abuse Prevention Month, I created a video called “We Need You to Listen” featuring various stories of people at different stages of their recovery.

I’ve been sharing my story since my college days where I organized Take Back the Night events in an effort to end stigma and offer hope to others. Sharing my story has been a powerful part of my healing as it’s helped ease the shame and isolation that caused far more suffering than the trauma itself. I found my voice and realized I could use it to help advocate for others and be part of the change. I’m passionate about meditation and nonviolent communication, as well as restorative justice as a means to change the larger culture of  violence and oppression. My vision for #metoorising is to focus on accessibility and systemic oppression in order to prevent violence at every level of society.

Jocelyn Schur, an advocate for survivors of trauma, restorative justice, leadership development, and sex education. She is committed to ending violence through education, prevention, and raising awareness by empowering youth and survivors to know their bodies and their rights. She is a leader of the Survivor Leadership Collective and pursing her MSW at Smith College.

Last week, we asked men why it’s important to be leaders in their communities to support survivors and fight sexual assault. This week, we asked: How are you working to #ChangetheCulture to prevent sexual assault? The individuals you’ll hear from below reaffirm that there are so many ways to advocate – creating cultural changes in the workplace, teaching children that they have control over their bodies, modeling healthy relationships, simply having a conversation about #MeToo – and more. 

At JWI, we’re working to shift norms, language, and attitudes through programming that aims to build a culture of consent. “

Read the full article here:

https://www.jwi.org/articles/how-were-changingtheculture

 

 

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3 thoughts on “How are you working to #ChangetheCulture to prevent sexual assault? #SexualAssaultAwarenessMonth

  1. Durzo says:

    As a male who experienced sexual assault at the age of 13 by a woman who was twice my age while living on the streets of Boston; I believe the issue is more complex than most are willing to admit due to cultural norms which perpetually promotes men to ‘suck-it-up and shut up’ while women are, within the the current political climate, are herald as perpetual victims of toxic masculinity.

    I have the utmost respect for what you’re trying to achieve , but I believe you can do better by seeing things from a much broader perspective. And that begins by researching the fact that toxicity exists within all of us, at varying degrees, as we all suffer from the human condition.

    Perhaps some ‘types of toxity’ are more prominent or rather exclusive to one sex than the other… But if you truly want to bring forth cultural changes, then you need to address both sides if you are to push society towards reaching a greater level of harmony.

    Cheers!

    • Hi Durzo, thanks for sharing your thoughts here. I’m sorry to hear what you’ve been through. I agree entirely about how complex this issue is and how cultural norms have an enormous impact on our political climate and the false dichotomy of how we discuss victimhood and the issue of sexual violence. I will keep in mind your challenge as I attempt to hold a broad perspective. As someone studying Buddhism, I deeply believe in our interconnectedness as humans and in my own life, I don’t like to use the words “perpetrator” or “abuser.” So much has changed as I continued my own work. We must address “both” sides, and most importantly build a bridge. Thanks for reaching out with your thoughtful feedback and thanks for reading my work. I’m curious how you found my page, if you’re open to sharing as I’ve suddenly received a dozen follows.

      • Durzo says:

        We’ve met a few times before and you’ve hinted at checking you out on social media. I’m astonished at how active you are in all of this and what you are doing is incredibly important to those who are learning how to live again after going through so much pain and suffering.

        However I feel that ideological tunnel vision is interfering with the progression of not only the type of work you do but also in becoming a more harmonious society.

        As the saying goes, “the road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

        In other words, humans are a very tribalistic species and thus very susceptible to waring against one another for the greater good of our various factions. And we are so easily persuaded by our ilk to paint anyone who isn’t one of our own as the enemy.

        I like fact that you’re embrassing Buddhism as much of it not only has to do with living in harmony with one another (including those who have a history of committing transgressions against others) but all of the natural world.

        Although I don’t think by embarrassing any particular type of religion or ideology will one learn moral goodness as I have come to believe that it has alway existed within us all. It merely needs to be ‘unlocked by another’ with great understanding and compassion.

        Human spirituality has always been the main driver in our success as a species.

        Long ago, before the written word was invented, knowledge was passed on through fantastical songs, dances, and even tied to certain geological features so that the next generation may have a better chance at survival. That was until the written word was finally invented did we began to see the rise of religious doctrines which in turn brought together the masses to form civilizations but it also brought about war; not for the sake of survival but religious supremacy.

        Modern political ideologies are rebrandings of religious ideologies which in turn are, to lesser or greater degrees, perversions or exploitations of human spirituality.

        For example, liberalism was originally an ancient Roman youth religion. Libras was the sorority goddess of wine, fertility, and freedom just like her male counterpart, Libre. Later, the goddess Libras was reborn as the Godess of Freedom during the French Revolution which inspired many political philosophers, such as John Locke (the father of modern liberalism), to question the true meaning of freedom and to create an entire system of government around it. Hence the birth of the US which the French commemorated with a gift of a collusus depicting the goddess Libras aka the Statue of Liberty.

        What does have to do with anything? Well, the point is that all of this began with human spirituality and if you truly want to make great cultural shifts within all of us, then all you have to do is look within yourself and realize that we are all same at our cores.

        I must apologize as I’m writing all of this on my phone while on the train and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to proof read all of this.

        Anyways, thanks for taking the time to reply and I hope your fame continues to grow!

        With love,
        Durzo

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