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Heidelberg University receives $300k grant from the U.S. Department of Justice

The money will add a position in the The Center for Survivor Empowerment
Published: Sep. 18, 2020 at 9:05 PM EDT
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TIFFIN, Ohio (WTVG) - The Center for Survivor Empowerment is a three-year-old program at Heidelberg University. It provides resources for campus victims of sexual assault, dating or domestic violence and stalking.

We’ve been able to expand a lot of our programs and initiatives all around topics of sexual assault, dating and domestic violence and stalking," Heidelberg University Director of the Center for Survivor Empowerment Ronee Rice said. “So we’ve been able to do more programming, more awareness events, more prevention specifically and also more support services and advocacy services for survivors.”

Now this program has three more years of funding thanks to a $300,000 grant from the United States Department of Justice.

“Feels amazing to know that our students are going to be supported here,” Rice said. “Sexual assault is a problem across our country across campus all across the country. But here on our campus we are actively, diligently combating that. With these funds we’re hoping that we can send the message that sexual assault will never be tolerated here.”

“Especially during the pandemic,” Heidelberg University Associated Professor and Director of Counseling Marjorie Shavers said. “We’re in a time where colleges around the country are cutting faculty, cutting student support, colleges just don’t know what to expect. So for us to get $300,000 that we know is going to go directly in to supporting the goals of the university particularly as it relates to sexual violence on campus is really important.”

The grant funding will provide for a new position on campus providing advocacy and counseling support.

“Out of all the universities in the (United States), only 50 schools got it,” Shavers said. “So I think it is really selective. When you look at small liberal arts schools in rural Ohio, I think its even smaller. So I think is what it really shows is that the federal government and the people there see that Heidelberg has something really special to offer. Hopefully that convinces students and parents that we take this seriously on our campus.”

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