We will undertake a survey of staff and students to identify:
- the prevalence and nature of sexual violence and harassment in each institution
- awareness of current reporting mechanisms
- awareness of current policy initiatives to tackle the behaviours
Our partners, IDAS and Survive, will undertake focus groups and 1:1s with students to explore in more depth:
- preferred routes for reporting and student expectations upon reporting including support options, internal sanctions and resolutions
- students’ understanding of what is a healthy relationship; the scale of the problem at each institution and how messages about healthy relationships should be designed and delivered
- the skills students’ believe they need to carry out a positive intervention, the best way to deliver this training and which groups this training should prioritise
From Phase 1’s data the project will deliver:
- more accessible reporting mechanisms;
- institutional policies and procedures that fit student need;
- a primary prevention programme by co-creating accessible hard copy, on-line and media resources with students and developing staff training. We will also run a collaborative campaign week with all project partners.
- an increase in the number of staff and students receiving positive bystander training
We will evaluate and capture the impact of the project in the following ways:
- undertake the survey again at the end of the project to assess how understanding, behaviour and awareness of reporting methods has increased;
- monitor the number of incidences reported over the course of the project;
- evaluate the campaign week and resources to examine their effectiveness for raising awareness and relevance to the student body;
- evaluate the bystander intervention to examine the effectiveness of the programme in increasing confidence to tackle inappropriate behaviour;
- develop an annual reporting process for Governing bodies and senior leadership teams
Students are at the heart of the project. Working with experienced staff, students will collaborate to define, design and deliver the project outcomes and influence cultural change on campus. Students will receive specialist training, be engaged in workshops and be co-creators of the building healthy relationships resources. We will ensure an inclusive approach to achieve outcomes that have relevance and meaning for all students.
The development of our accessible reporting mechanisms will positively impact students as it will make it easier for students to report sexual violence or harassment. Through the systematic sharing of data relevant agencies in York will understand the true scale of the problem and appropriately resource a response. Policy development and a clearer interaction with other policies (e.g. discipline) will benefit students and staff who will have a clearer understanding of options.
The development of our primary prevention building healthy relationships material and training will deliver a benefit for the whole student body as an awareness raising exercise influencing cultural change. The project will also benefit those students who are co-creators, both in their personal development but also in the skills they will gain from developing, designing and delivering the materials. The Intervention Initiative, the IDAS Champions training and Consent training will equip students with awareness and practical bystander skills to make a difference to campus culture. The development of these skills will benefit students from an employability perspective (particularly in our professional courses where safeguarding skills are vital).
The best way in which to achieve these ambitions is for students to work with the institutions and charities in defining, designing and delivering the project so that we can collaboratively positively influence cultural change on. Students must be listened to and their needs understood. They must be the co-creators of the healthy relationships programme so they can create the right language that is both relevant and effective with their peers. Students’ will need to receive appropriate training and support by specialists in this area to help them feel confident in challenging unhealthy ways of relating, harassment and inappropriate ‘banter’ on their campus.