Thursday, September 11, 2008

My Website Is In Development And Has A Name

Earlier this year, I asked for assistance from my readers if there was interest in seeing a regular website on the subject matter of this blog. I got some help and I am thrilled to announce that I purchased the domain name for this website and have begun development. (I also own .org in case what I'm doing goes beyond an individual effort)

Additional donations are welcome to offset hosting costs since they exceeded the donations I've received so far.

What is more important than financial support is feedback from other survivors of date rape and from survivors of other permutations of sexual violence on what information and resources are must includes on my upcoming website. I have content on over 20 pages which cover a variety of subtopics.

On launch day (whenever that will be) I want this website to be a useful resource and a useful starting point for both survivors and those who have never experienced sexual violence without any major gaps.

I have mixed feelings about advertising. Thoughts, suggestions?

What books and videos do you recommend for those who survived rape? For those who have a friend or family member who survived rape? For those who want to get beyond the myths and victim blaming? For law enforcement or other responders?

What YouTube videos do you recommend?

What research studies should be mentioned?

What's the best way for people to search their local jurisdiction for sex crime laws in the US and beyond? Are there any useful databases which should be linked to?

Some of the content from Abyss2hope will be on this new web site and some of it will linked to from the web site. Are there any pages which are must adds?

There are other individuals and organizations with related content and I want to be able to direct visitors to those who have relevant services and information. This includes resources for survivors of sexual violence which would never be described as date rape. Suggestions?

I have a take action section. Suggestions?

The section on reporting includes some information on the backlash date rape victims can face from police and others. I want to encourage reporting without sending rape victims in unprepared for what can be hostile treatment. No rape victim deserves to be treated like a criminal minus the rights given to suspected criminals.

I also want to educate responders so they will understand how practices which seem reasonable to them hurt rape victims. For those survivors who have had bad experiences what do you want responders to know about certain practices or behaviors?

Other suggestions are welcome.

If you want your comment to be seen by me only, put the word private at the beginning and I won't publish it.

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posted by Marcella Chester @ 1:54 PM   3 comments links to this post


At September 11, 2008 5:15 PM, Anonymous MHeald said...

I recommend "Transforming a Rape Culture" as a resource for a variety of audiences. It's a collecion of essays covering a vast array of issues relating to sexual assualt from diverse viewpoints.

At September 11, 2008 9:51 PM, Blogger joonzmoon said...

For the "take action" section:

* Volunteer for advocacy training at the local/county rape crisis/women's center. Many will take whatever hours you can give and provide amazing references on all types of sexual assault and its aftermath.

* Volunteer to do online advocacy training or hotline advocacy training at the RAINN website. The online advocacy is nice because it's via computer from home and has flex hours.

* Join online sexual assault survivor forums in order to gain insight and ask for suggestions from a survivor community (if the members are okay with this). I know of good ones on LiveJournal and other random forums.

* Attend BOE meetings at local public schools and push the need for sexual assault education at all level, but especially middle and high school. As a teacher, I can't tell you how disheartening it is that so many of my students think it's okay to make rape jokes or do a presentation making light of white vans and child molestation. They have NO idea. The BOE will listen if the public outcry is loud enough.

* Attend Take Back the Night at a local college campus and even offer to speak if you are a survivor and are up to it.

* Read blogs like this or feminist forums that feature sexual assault awareness and then share them with others in an RSS feed reader like Google Reader, in an effort to educate others.

* Donate cash to RAINN, donate new flip flops or t-shirts or robes to local crisis centers (for post-exam situations in which the original clothing has been submitted as evidence).

* Talk to your own kids about their responsibilities for forming, maintaining and respecting boundaries for both boys and girls. Encourage questions.

At September 12, 2008 12:25 PM, Blogger Marcella Chester said...

MHeald & joonzmoon,

Thanks for the suggestions.


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