Leave site now

Looking after yourself

On this page you will find:

Working to improve responses to sexual misconduct at university can be challenging. The impact of working with a traumatic issue, like sexual misconduct, can take its toll on us whether or not we have lived experience of sexual misconduct ourselves.

The impacts can include secondary trauma, a result of exposure to trauma experienced by other people.

The following guide from AVA (the creators of this hub) is designed to support officers, students, campaigners and university staff to stay safe and look after their wellbeing as they work with trauma:

  • You may be receiving disclosures
  • You may be reading, writing and sharing information about sexual misconduct
  • You may be working alongside survivors of violence and abuse
  • You may be a survivor of violence and abuse yourself

This guide sets out the impact of working with trauma, supports you to spot the signs of secondary trauma, and develop self-care strategies that work for you.

More information on secondary trauma & burnout

British Medical Foundation (2019) on secondary trauma.

See this Help Guide (2019) on burn out.

Self-care tips

Breathing Space provides tailored self-care techniques for survivors of violence and abuse. Breathing Space is an app and online tool developed by AVA and survivors of violence and abuse.

Self-care tips for women exposed to sexual violence media coverage from the Mental Health Foundation.

Self-care resources from the Women and Girls Network.

Understanding trauma

AVA’s Complicated Matters (2013) toolkit is a comprehensive toolkit addressing domestic and sexual violence, mental ill-health and substance use. Section 2 of the toolkit provides a detailed description of trauma and how it affects people.