University launches campaign supporting survivors of sexual violence

Letters to Survivors uses virtual board to send messages of affirmation

The campaign landed at Queen’s for the first time this semester. 

This week, Queen’s students have the opportunity to show support and affirmation for survivors of sexual violence and assault through the Letters to Survivors Campaign. 

In collaboration with Queen’s Residence Life, the Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office (SVPRO) is running the Survivor Love Letters campaign Sept. 14-18. 

Residence Life and the Queen’s Sexual Violence Prevention and Response office both declined The Journal’s request for comment.

The campaign was started by filmmaker and activist Tani Ikeda in 2012 when she wrote a letter to her younger self that ended with the words: “this is my survivor love letter.” 

READ MORE: Following delay, University shares proposed revisions to sexual violence policy

Ikeda later founded Survivor Love Letters by turning her singular act into an Ontario-wide post-secondary campaign which encourages people to believe and support survivors of sexual violence. 

#SurvivorLoveLetter aims to communicate the message of support to thousands of survivors through letters of affirmation saying they’re believed, supported, and loved.

The campaign landed at Queen’s this semester. 

Students can become involved by submitting affirmations of support to survivors by visiting the University’s virtual Letters to Survivors wall.

READ MORE: 'Consent at Queen’s’ highlights prevalence of sexual violence on campus

The letters shared a range of messages, including “you are more than what happened to you” and “you are not just believed, you are loved.” 

“Dear Survivor, I stand by you. I stand with you. I believe you, and you deserve to believe yourself. Thank you for staying here, you make the world a better place. Healing takes time,” another letter on the virtual wall read.

The wall aims to create a culture of care and support at Queen’s during a time of social isolation brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The SVPRO will be actively sharing resources throughout the week on Instagram.

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