Mission Statement and Overview
The mission of Resources for Sexual Violence Prevention at the University of Chicago is to promote healthy gender relations through dialogue and education and to work toward the elimination of sexual violence. The scope of issues RSVP addresses is quite broad, ranging from dating (including communication and sexual decision-making), to risk reduction for sexual assault (especially acquaintance rape), stalking, and relationship violence.
RSVP activities include dissemination of information, interactive educational programming, referrals for survivors as well as for their friends and family, coordination with other University and student groups, and structural intervention within (and occasionally beyond) the University. RSVP also trains students with the skills necessary to become activists and implement the University's commitment to the progressive education of women and men in a world free from sexual violence.
Opportunities for education and participation
Free workshops: for students by students
Are you a member of a fraternity, sorority, RSO, house, or other campus organization? Educate your group! Sign up to have our peer educators facilitate a workshop. Workshops provide a safe place to discuss sensitive topics including: acquaintance rape prevention, gender in the media, sexual communication, and the role of alcohol and other drugs in sexual assault.
Programs & events
Peer Education Program
The RSVP Peer Education Program offers students the opportunity to become activists. The program provides a vehicle for students to grow as gifted leaders in facilitation and education around sexual violence prevention. After students are selected through an application and interview process, they receive approximately 20 hours of training on sexual assault and related issues including dating violence, interconnectedness of racism, sexism, heterosexism and violence, as well as essential skills on how to lead effective discussions on these sensitive topics. RSVP's Peer Educators co-facilitate workshops on acquaintance rape, rape culture, risk reduction, gender in the media, communication, and the role of alcohol and other drugs in sexual assault. These workshops can be requested by student groups throughout the University, including dorm houses, R.S.O.s, fraternities, and classrooms, and occasionally in the Chicago community outside of the University.
General Volunteer Program
The RSVP General Volunteers assist in planning events to raise awareness on sexual assault prevention. They work closely with the Program Coordinator to conceive, plan and implement events ranging from guest speakers to days of service and other activities related to sexual violence prevention.
RSVP also collaborates with other campus groups to coordinate such events as the annual SpeakOut against sexual and domestic violence, periodic Self-Defense seminars, and the Sex Signals orientation program. RSVP invites the University community to contact our office with any special programming needs.
RSVP coordinates an annual month of events in April (Sexual Assault Awareness Month) as well as events throughout the academic year. Events include national speakers, special topics workshops and panel discussions, as well as other opportunities for activism, education, awareness, and expression on issues surrounding sexual assault and its reduction.
Sexual Assault Awareness Month
Please join us in honoring Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) in April and raise awareness about an issue of importance to all members of the university community.
Annual Speak Out Against Sexual and Domestic Violence (April 2013)
This year RSVP will collaborate with the YWCA Metropolitan Chicago to produce ‘Take Back The Light’, a Speak Out and Rally Against Sexual and Domestic Violence. This event will be a supportive space for survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, and dating violence. At this unique and powerful event, spoken word artists/performers, survivors and their supporters are provided a safe space in which to share their stories of violence, survival, and recovery.
Sexual Violence Awareness Week
Please visit often for the schedule of events for Sexual Violence Awareness Week in Fall quarter. Annual events include a Self-Defense seminar (in conjunction with UCPD) taught by Officer Eric Heath and a film screening and discussion.
Please visit often for the most current information on RSVP's other education and awareness events. Events will be posted throughout the Fall quarter, including a Self-Defense seminar and a film screening and discussion with the Director.
Members of the university have many opportunities to volunteer and raise awareness about issues relating to prevention of sexual harassment, sexual assault or sex offense.