News

05 April 18Sophie Tudor

S.H.A.G Week

It is no secret that discussing sexual health can be a bit of a taboo subject, and let’s face it, most people feel uncomfortable talking about it in an open setting. That’s why in Week 6 of T1, we are celebrating S.H.A.G Week! And no, we’re not talking about Austin Powers.

So, what is S.H.A.G Week?

S.H.A.G (Sexual Health and Guidance) Week will take place across all Deakin University campuses from 16 - 20 April and aims to change and challenge pre-conceived notions or bias towards the topic of sexual health and to create awareness about the importance of personal health practices.

It will provide students with an opportunity to start important conversations through workshops, discussions and general conversation, where they’ll be given accurate information by internal and external medical advisors.

This year’s theme ‘Let’s talk about X’ will open that platform for students to feel comfortable and confident in talking about all things sex, such as sexual harassment and assault, importance of consent, learning the science of pleasure, reflecting on your sexual identity, and why all students who are sexually active should get an STI check.

It’s worrying to think that sexually transmitted diseases in university settings have seen a massive increase in recent years. The Annual Surveillance Report on HIV, Viral Hepatitis and STIs in Australia 2017 discovered that chlamydia was the most frequently notified sexually transmissible infection in Australia, with three quarters of these notifications were among people aged 15-29 years.  

This startling statistic shows us that students need to recognize the importance of looking after their own sexual health, and most importantly, be safe. Likewise, it is not only important to use protection and stop unwanted sexually transmitted diseases, but to also ensure your own physical, emotional, and psychological well-being. 

Another shocking statistic we discovered was the high volume of sexual assault in Australia, and in particular, at university settings. Indeed, sexual assault at university and college settings have been widely discussed and debated on platforms across the world, including the riveting Netflix documentary The Hunting Ground.

According to the Change The Course: National Report on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment at Australian Universities (2017), where 30,000+ tertiary students were surveyed, 1.6% of students were sexually assaulted in a university setting, including travel to and from university on at least one occasion in 2015 or 2016.

Furthermore, 94% of students who were sexually harassed and 87% of students who were sexually assaulted, did not make a formal report or complaint to their university.  

There are many reasons as to why sexual assault victims might not choose to report sexual assault, due to a fear that they won’t be taken seriously or they do not wish to re-live their trauma by having to repeat what happened to them.

DUSA Welfare Officer, Dani Timtschenko, emphasizes that this could be because they lack information about who to turn to for support and where they can go to report the incident.

“We as a community need to create an inclusive space, so we can normalize sex by speaking about it in an honest non-judgmental way. As a society, the culture surrounding sexual harassment and assault, as a whole, needs to change. We need to call out troubling behaviour where we see it and also ensure that survivors are listened to, believed, and supported in a way that is appropriate for their needs,” said Dani.

Indeed, S.H.A.G Week is all about having these open discussions, and at DUSA, we strongly encourage all students to get involved. Speak up, be confident and be SAFE. Enjoy the many activities available across all campuses, whether it’s attending a workshop or speaking with one of our registered nurses or visiting the on-campus Medical Centres for your free STI check.

Let’s start talking about X…
 

S.H.A.G Week Event Details

BURWOOD

Monday 16 April
Wall of Stories
10.30am - 12.30pm
Main Stage Area, Morgan’s Walk

Wednesday 18 April  
Let's Talk About X! Giant Games and Free Wraps
Main Stage Area, Morgan’s Walk
12.00pm - 2.00pm

Thursday 19 April 
'All You Need Is Love' Afternoon Tea with Deakin Health Promotion Society
Interactive discussion about respectful relationships, ethical sex and gender equality. 
12.30pm - 1.50pm
HE3.002
Free for members and non-members. RSVP at deakinhealthpromotionsociety@gmail.com

‘Reclaim the Night Walk’
5pm - 7pm
Main Stage Area, Morgan’s Walk
*This walk will start from Main Stage, down to the Creek, up to Elgar Road, across the new link bridge and back to Morgan’s Walk. A free DUSA whistle/led keyring will be handed out to all participants.  

Thursday 26 April (the following week)
Let’s Talk About X Workshop
3pm - 4.30pm
B1.28, Burwood campus
BOOK HERE

GEELONG

Tuesday 17 April
Free ‘Goodbye STI’ Wraps & Fries Lunch
12pm - 2pm
Waterfront Gallery on Level 2
STI health information packs will be handed out, as well as a ‘Guess the Microbe’ game. Information on how to book your next STI testing will be available for students!
Free Condom Wall - No Glove No Love

Thursday 19 April 
Free ‘Goodbye STI’ Burger & Fries Lunch
12pm - 2pm
East End Dining Hall, Waurn Ponds
STI health information packs will be handed out, as well as a ‘Guess the Microbe’ game. Information on how to book your next STI testing will be available for students!
Free Condom Wall - No Glove No Love

Thursday 19 April 
DUSA Safe Walk
5.30pm - 7pm
Waurn Ponds Under the Cube
*This walk is aimed to promote safety on campus, promote the SafeZone app and Deakin Security prior to departure. A free DUSA whistle/led keyring and glow thunder stick will be handed out to all participants. 

Tuesday 24 April (the following week)
Let’s Talk About X Workshop
2pm - 3.30pm
DD2.218Waurn Ponds campus
BOOK HERE

WARRNAMBOOL

Tuesday, 17 April
DUSA Safe Walk
4pm - 6pm
Including free afternoon tea supplied by Brother Fox

Wednesday, 18 April
Free ‘Goodbye STI’ Burger & Fries Lunch
11.30am – 1.30pm
Building H1.2A Cafeteria West

Free STI Discussion & Referral Drop-Ins
12.00pm – 3.00pm at Building B, lower level.
An on-campus nurse will be available to make your appointment with the Hopkins Medical Centre (or you can call to make an appointment 5563 3256)

Thursday, 19 April
Free STI Discussion & Referral Drop-Ins
12.00pm – 3.00pm at Building B, lower level.
An on-campus nurse will be available to make your appointment with the Hopkins Medical Centre (or you can call to make an appointment 5563 3256)

Deakin Health and Nursing Carnival Ball will also be providing sexual health information during their event. Tickets are available to purchase from DUSA Bookshop (for further details email: dusa-nursing-health-society@deakin.edu.au)