Sexual violence is any sexual activity where consent is not freely given. Sexual violence affects millions of people each year in the United States, and it can cause many health consequences such as mental health, injury, and chronic physical health problems. The 2015 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS) reports:
- More than 1 in 3 women and nearly 1 in 4 men have experienced sexual violence involving physical contact at some point in their lives.
- Nearly 1 in 5 women and 1 in 38 men have experienced completed or attempted rape in their lifetimes
The South Dakota Rape Prevention Education (RPE) program is funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This funding is authorized through the Violence Against Women Act.
The goal of the RPE program is to strengthen sexual violence prevention efforts by focusing on primary prevention: preventing sexual violence before it occurs. It operates in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and six U.S. territories. The CDC provides tools, training, and technical assistance to the RPE program to prevent sexual violence, reduce risk factors, enhance protective factors, promote best practices, analyze data and evaluate prevention efforts.
With the RPE program, South Dakota hopes to lower sexual violence rates against everyone, but especially the target audiences of children, teens, young adults, and Native Americans.
Effective program evaluation is a systematic way to improve and account for public health actions by involving procedures that are useful, feasible, ethical, and accurate. Several evaluation tools were developed to monitor and assess South Dakota RPE program activities:
To learn more about the South Dakota RPE Program please review the following documents:
- State Action Plan
- State Evaluation Plan
- Logic Model
- Center for Disease Control, Sexual Violence Prevention
- STOP SV: A Technical Package to Prevent Sexual Violence
- Transforming Communities to Prevent Sexual Violence
- Social Ecological Model: A Framework for Prevention
- The Public Health Approach to Violence Prevention
- South Dakota Department of Health
- The Network Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault
- The Center for the Prevention of Child Maltreatment
- SDSU Population Health Evaluation Center
- Various Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Centers
- Children’s Home Society
- Department of Public Safety
- Law Enforcement (local police and county sheriffs)
- White Buffalo Calf Society
- Indian Health Services
- South Dakota Board of Regents
- The Center for Equality
- Department of Human Services
- South Dakota Boys and Girls Club
In April 2023, a total of 176 students, faculty, staff, and community members attended "Sex and the Law" when it was presented at five South Dakota universities. "Sex Signals" was presented at one South Dakota university with 175 attendees. A post-survey was offered for attendees to complete at the conclusion of each program. "Sex and the Law" attendees surveyed found sexual assault and/or policies and bystander intervention to be the most useful topics covered in the program. Those who completed the "Sex Signals" post-survey found the following to be the most useful topics covered: myths surrounding rape and violence survivors, bystander intervention, and impacts on rape on individual and community levels.
Originally, the plan was to hold one camp, but many youth throughout the area showed high interest in attending. Therefore, in Summer 2023, Norma and her colleagues held three separate camps for four days each. The camps were held on sacred land of the Oglala Sioux Tribe near Kyle, SD. A total of 127 boys and girls attended the camps, all around 11-15 years of age.