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  • Writer's pictureHumans of International Studies

ELIZE (3rd year) 2/2

“My tasks in Safe Haven include translating everything into English. Currently, I am working on translating the website in English, to make it available to internationals as well. I also conduct interviews with people who have experienced sexual misconduct and write their stories down. In these interviews, I noticed that many people were hesitant to talk about their experiences, because they believed that their experiences were ‘small’ and that they did not matter as much. And unfortunately, a lot of sexual transgressive behaviour is normalized, like catcalling or not being able to walk in the dark safely as a woman. With Safe Haven, we want to break this normalization down, and we want to stress that whatever you have experienced, it matters and you are allowed to share your story. I personally came to see my own experiences in a different light as well, in that I also had this idea that what I experienced was ‘normal’ and that it was just something that ‘happened’. But now I can see that my own experiences were also not okay and that they should not be brushed off as normal.

If you recognise yourself in the experiences of people mentioned in the blogs or community posts of Safe Haven, know that you are not alone. There are many people, platforms and organisations out there, that provide support. And it is okay to take your time and to take steps that you feel comfortable with. Safe Haven is a safe place where you can escape to for a while, and when you are ready, we help you to your next destination, wherever that might be. We are there for you.” (Elize, 3rd year, The Netherlands/Gouda) (2/2)

This is the link to the website of Safe Haven: (the website is now only available in Dutch, but soon available in English as well).

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