What is Building Hope & Resiliency: Addressing the Effects of Sexual Assault?
Building Hope & Resiliency: Addressing the Effects of Sexual Assault is a self-guided, online, educational program that seeks to help you begin to recover, heal and build resiliency after a sexual assault. Recognizing the impact that trauma can have, this program is part of a comprehensive effort to enhance resilience and improve readiness across the Total Force. The program is designed to be completed at your pace and features definitions, helpful information about coping mechanisms, practical relaxation exercises, and links to resources and referrals for on-going support. Also included is a brief, optional self-assessment for you to gauge how effective your current coping strategies are, and whether you may benefit from additional support and resources. The program can be completed anonymously, or SARCs and Victim Advocates looking for additional information on this topic can complete the course for one hour of D-SAACP credit.
For more information on the background and development of this program, download the Information Paper.
What can I expect when participating in the program?
The program consists of five self-paced modules. You can decide when you want to access the program and how long you wish to spend on each module. The entire course will take approximately one hour to complete.
Module 1 - What Does Sexual Assault Look Like? (est. completion time 10-15 minutes)
Some individuals who have experienced sexual assault may have difficulty labeling what happened to them. This module provides examples and information of what sexual assault may look like to help you find language to describe your own story. Also included are links to more information on how the Department of Defense and states define sexual assault.
- Understanding sexual assault
- Defining consent
Module 2 - What Are the Effects of Sexual Assault? (est. completion time 15 minutes)
This module provides information on the body's response to trauma and different symptoms that you may experience. This information is intended to normalize and validate your experience, in order to help you develop a greater understanding of your personal triggers and to deepen your self-awareness as you begin the healing process.
- Potential responses to trauma
- Emotional and physical symptoms a survivor may experience
- Behavior changes that may occur after trauma
- How trauma can affect the brain
- Triggers and how they can impact a survivor's healing process
- An interactive sensory activity to help with grounding and staying present
Module 3 - How Can I Heal? (est. completion time 10 minutes)
Trauma can affect individuals in profound ways and everyone has a different path to healing. This module introduces realistic and practical coping mechanisms to help you gain control of your recovery and equips you with tools to examine your personal boundaries within your own interpersonal interactions. You also have the option to take a brief assessment to determine the effectiveness of your current coping strategies and whether you might benefit from additional support and resources.
- Post-traumatic personal growth
- The healing journey
- Recognizing strengths and positive emotions
- Coping strategies
- Healthy relationships
- Supportive resources and therapy
- Reporting options for survivors
Module 4 - Relaxation Exercises (est. completion time 15 minutes)
This module provides three relaxation exercises you can use if you feel triggered or overwhelmed in the moment. These exercises are just a few of many that are available. You can explore these and use them to help determine what works best for you.
- Body awareness
- Muscle relaxation
- Mindful breathing
Module 5 - Resources and References
This module provides you with both military and non-military related resources if you want to explore on-going support. The information provided is meant to help empower you to make the best choices for you and your recovery.
- Military resources
- Resiliency resources
- Additional resources