What is the Unashamed Campaign?
Unashamed is a week-long campaign run by Restored and Just Love. We want to engage Christian students, both female and male, in confronting violence and abuse against women at university. We’re doing this by equipping Christian students to:
i. raise awareness of the extent and effects of violence against women at university
ii. challenge abuse and violence wherever they see it
iii. celebrate positive stories of women and men who are courageously challenging gender injustice and empowering those around them to do the same
I’ve experienced abuse/assault – how can I get help?
You are not alone. In many countries there is help and support for you. If you are in the UK and in immediate danger and fear for your life then dial 999 and ask for the police. Otherwise, call the national domestic violence hotline on 0808 2000 247 who will direct and guide you. You can find out what your local services are available to you on the Rape Crisis website or on the Women’s Aid website.
What about men that are abused?
We acknowledge that abuse is not limited to women and that many men suffer abuse and violence as well. No matter your gender, abuse is never the victim’s fault. If you’re a man who has been subjected to abuse or violence, Mens Advice Line can offer advice and support. We’ve decided to focus on ending violence against women at university, mainly because women students are disproportionately subjected to violence and abuse. The abuse of women by men has some of its foundations in the historic, and continued, inequality of men and women.This is not a foundation of the abuse of men which means that there must be different and separate responses to abuse of women and the abuse of men.
Is Unashamed anti-men?
Absolutely not. In fact we want men to be involved. We need men to be involved. This campaign is about women and men speaking out about male violence against women together. Men often find themselves in positions of influence and power. We want to see all men able to use their power and influence for good and demonstrate a healthy use, and not abuse, of that power. In some cases it may mean laying down that power. We want men to demonstrate healthy role models of positive relationships. We want men to join us to end the violence. Men can be involved in this campaign by listening to women’s experiences of violence and abuse at university and committing to call out abusive behaviour and language wherever they see it. We want to encourage every male student to sign up to First Man Standing, a community of more than 1000 Christian men who want to support each other in standing up against sexism and seeking equality for women and men.
How widespread is violence against women at university?
Results from the NUS Survey Hidden Marks, which was published in 2010, indicate that 1 in 7 women students (14%) has been the victim of serious sexual assault or serious physical violence whilst at university or college. The survey of 2000 women students also found that:
12% have been stalked while at university or college;
In 60% of these cases of sexual assault or stalking, the perpetrator was also a student;
Only 4% of women students who have been seriously sexually assaulted have reported it to their institution;
Only 10% of women students who have been seriously sexually assaulted have reported it to the police;
Of those who did not report serious sexual assault to the police, 50% said it was because they felt ashamed or embarrassed, and 43% because thought they would be blamed for what happened.
The Telgraph newspaper commissioned a survey of female undergraduates in 2015. 34% of the women polled indicated they had experienced some form of assault or abuse whilst at university. 43% of these women did not report their ordeal, even to friends or family.
Does Unashamed condemn violence against trans women?
This campaign condemns all forms of gender-based violence, including the horrific violence suffered by trans women.
What is Restored?
Restored is an international Christian alliance working to transform relationships and end violence against women. We want to see the Church take action and be a safe place for both women and men to be the people that God made them to be. The Church is often central in community life and can have a big influence over culture. We want to see the cultures in our societies and churches changing so that violence against women is ‘never acceptable, never tolerable, never excusable’ (Ban Ki-Moon, UN Secretary General). Our resources section has lots of free resources to help churches get started.
What is Just Love?
Just Love is a movement of Christian students. We started three years ago with a vision to inspire and release every Christian student to pursue the biblical call to social justice. We are now a network of 11 university-based groups which enable students to serve both the cities in which they live and the wider world by engaging in local and global action, advocacy and prayer. We want to raise up a generation of Christian students who will go on to engage in a lifelong pursuit of justice through every sphere of society – we believe that our graduates will become leaders and innovators in the charity sector, people who bring integrity and change to politics, social responsibility and radical generosity to business, and will stand for Jesus’ justice wherever they are.
How can I give to support Unashamed?
Just Love and Restored,who are running this campaign, are registered charities in England & Wales. Their charity numbers are 1167174 and 1136774, respectively. To give to Restored you can do so via CAF or cheque by making the donation out to Restored and sending to our address PO Box 447, Teddington, TW11 1AY. You can also give by text. Please text Rest03 (amounts between £1 and £10) and send to 70070. You can give to Just Love via their Stewardship page: https://www.give.net/20180370.