Curtis Meyer, Reporter
The U-Club in the Overman Student Center was reserved by Students for Violence Prevention for their event. “Meet You Advocate.”
The event gave students at Pitt State to talk with their advocate from safehouse and get some free coffee.
Vice advocate Megan Rodgers was there to talk with students and answer questions about what she does.
“We are doing Meet Your Advocate today at the center, we want everybody, if they can, to come out and meet the advocates that are going to be coming to Pitt State. We are going to provide services just like we are in the community. That would be counseling, therapy, helping people navigate the title IX process, as well as connecting them with Megan Johnson,” said Rodgers.
Megan Johnson is currently Pitt State’s coordinator for advocacy and wellness. Another resource for students, she is also advisor for SVP/ She was also at the U-Club to talk to students about any questions they had.
“We have advocates from Safehouse crisis center here, available for students to come, ask questions, just meet, and get to know, as well as grab a free cup of coffee. The purpose of the event is just to let students know that they do have advocacy services, that safehouse comes to campus, that they are supported, and that there are resources available to students who are survivors of sex-based violence,” said Johnson.
For those who do not know Safehouse is a Pittsburg based group that seeks to provide help and services for anyone who is a victim of sexual assault and abuse. The advocates are from Safehouse, and their job is to assist victims in a variety of ways.
“We provide many services. That would be individual counseling, more as emotional support. I would say, we will help with protection orders, getting attorneys, court accompaniment as well, going into court because that’s a hard time navigating that by yourself, so that’s what we’re here for. We have a program right now for free gas if any victim needs gas. We have free therapy and emergency shelter, so anybody on campus if they lived here and they wanted to get away from campus while we’re working on things to make them safer, we have an emergency shelter. They would just need to call our hotline. We have two numbers; we have our shelter and our office. Our shelter number is 620-231-8251, and our office number is 620-231-8692. So, any services that safehouse offers, you can call those numbers and they’ll connect you, or you can go to the student life center, and they will connect you to an advocate as well,” said Rodgers.
Rodgers and Johnson believe that spreading the word about advocacy is important, especially for students. Anyone with more questions that missed the meeting at the U-Club is welcome to call Safehouse or get in touch with them through any of the ways mentioned.
“It is essential. Unfortunately, sexual assault and harassment are serious problems in our society and culture, and they are highly disruptive to students who have experienced them. It is essential that these resources are available so that students can heal, be supported, and be successful on campus,” said Johnson.