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Promoting a healthy community free of abuse and violence at the University of Virginia

About

Not on Our Grounds is a University of Virginia initiative dedicated to ending power-based personal violence through a strategic plan for the prevention of sexual violence and hazing. The Not on Our Grounds initiative is a collaboration between University students, faculty, and staff from various departments and organizations on Grounds, including the Office of the Dean of Students, the Office of Health Promotion, the University Police Department, the Office for Equal Opportunity and Civil Rights, the Women's Center, and the Office of Safety and Emergency Preparedness.

Online Module

The Not on Our Grounds sexual violence education modules are required of all incoming students, including first-year students, transfer students, and graduate and professional students. The module is designed to educate students on conduct prohibited by the University’s Policy on Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment and Other Forms of Interpersonal Violence and inform students of ways in which we all can serve as active bystanders and community leaders in preventing harassment and violence in our community. The module provides a baseline level of information and community expectations that are expanded upon when students arrive to Grounds. 

Bystander Intervention

A central component of the Not on Our Grounds initiative is the topic of bystander intervention. Bystanders are individuals who witness emergencies, criminal activities, or other potentially unsafe situations. At UVA, we train students to be active bystanders when they witness a situation that may lead to power-based personal violence, including sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking. All first-year students participate in a fall orientation program that introduces the UVA Green Dot bystander intervention program. From there, students continue to engage with the program by participating in in-depth Green Dot bystander trainings or by participating in a shorter Green Dot overview talk with their residence hall, student organization, team, or other group. In addition to the Green Dot program, the #HOOSGotYourBack bystander intervention awareness campaign serves as a reminder to the broader UVA community that violence is not tolerated on Grounds and that everyone has a responsibility to maintain a safe community.

Student Leadership Opportunities

UVA students are a vital part of the success of the Not on Our Grounds initiative through their work in peer education on topics of bystander intervention, consent, survivor support, and awareness of University and community resources. Students are also a central part of program and event planning related to the prevention of power-based personal violence. Student groups frequently lead discussions to residence halls, fraternities and sororities, and other student organizations.  Students are also involved as Green Dot bystander intervention training faciliators and as Positive Organization Expectation hazing prevention facilitators.