Were You Sexually Assaulted in the Peace Corps?

Nicholas Hack (Zambia 2005-07) wrote me recently with this request: “I’m a RPCV who served in Zambia in 2005. I’m currently working on my doctorate in psychology and am studying an area in which there has been no research: sexual assault in the Peace Corps. I’m hoping to hear from past and current female Volunteers who experienced sexual assault during their service so we can bring these stories to light.

In order to protect the confidentiality of participants I’m using an anonymous online survey that takes 15-20 minutes to complete. Out of respect and care for participants the survey does not ask any questions about the assault itself. The survey was also developed in collaboration with other survivors of Peace Corps Sexual Assault to minimize any triggering/blaming/shaming language.

I’d like to give a big thank you in advance to those who have the courage to share their stories.

Your participation in this study can help future survivors of assault. Having additional data that is not normally collected may help contextualize the issue of sexual assault in the Peace Corps, challenging misconceptions and confronting myths. Your participation will help highlight what services and supports are most helpful, what may be missing, and many of the challenges involved in moving forward after the assault.

Completing the survey will take approximately 15-20 minutes and the results will be anonymous. Your participation is voluntary and at any point you are free to choose not to finish or submit your answers. The questions will focus on your experiences in the days/months/years after the assault and may evoke difficult memories and/or emotions. You will not be asked to describe the assault.

While steps have been taken to minimize risk of psychological harm, you may want to prepare adequate time, space, or support in case of any emotional experience that arises in the course of this survey. Trained counselors can also be reached 24/7 at the National Sexual Assault Hotline (1.800.656.HOPE) if you would like to speak directly with somebody for support.

The data from this survey will be reported in a Doctorate of Psychology (PsyD) dissertation for the Wright Institute. If you would like a copy of the completed research or a summary of the results, please contact the Principal Investigator, Nicholas Hack, M.A, The Wright Institute. Questions, comments, and concerns may be addressed with me directly at: nhack@wi.edu.

Go to this site: SurveyMonkey [dot com] /s/VCWFRXZ

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