ongoing projects

Education Sessions

The Army of Survivors is proud to offer education sessions, panels, and lectures designed to inspire positive change and build safer communities. In these sessions, Army representatives focus on consent, prevention, intervention, and response techniques.

Contact us to schedule an evidence-based education session at your school, gym, studio, or community center:

  • Grades K–5: Good Touch, Bad Touch
  • Grades 6–12: What is Consent?
  • College/Community: Sports Culture, Consent, and Accountability
  • A curated session developed for your needs

resource development

Our organization strives to find the areas in which survivors of sexual violence, and survivors of sexual violence in sport need support. One huge gap that we’ve identified is in the resources available for survivors after violence. Therefore, we have set out to not only create effective resources, but also to distribute them to those in need. Our organization is proud to have developed many resources for survivors like our What Now? resource which walks survivors through options after violence, allies through how best to support survivors, and professionals on what happens after reporting suspected or known abuse. We have also created several printable resources, Spotify playlists, a resource on the science behind trauma, lists of books and movies to escape, lists of books and movies to educate, trauma informed approaches and more. We have several resources in the works around what it means to be trauma informed, and more on healing as well.

campus ambassadors

We are excited to welcome to our team as Campus Ambassadors students from across the nation who have a passion for creating positive change. TAOS Campus Ambassadors help us further our mission on their campus by distributing resources, establishing relationships with student activists and campus organizations that align with our mission, and amplifying the voices of those on campus through The Army of Survivors’ channels. Currently we have ambassadors at the University of Michigan, Michigan State University, Ohio State University, and Butler University. If you are interested in joining our team please click here.

current projects

healing cards

September 2020-Current

We send cards to survivors who have recently come forward about their abuse sharing healing words, and helpful resources. With over 100 survivors reached already, we are working to make sure that each survivor knows there is any army standing with them as they face their abuser.

Past projects

January 2019-October 2020

We worked with Champion Women to pass national legislation that establishes safeguards to protect amateur athletes from abuse, including sexual abuse, by coaches and employees in U.S. Olympic and Paralympic sports. Senate Bill 2330 was signed in to law on October 30, 2020.

The bill establishes (1) legislative mechanisms by which Congress can dissolve the Board of Directors of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) and decertify national governing bodies; and (2) a duty of care that USOPC owes to amateur athletes, including protecting athletes by requiring it to ensure that any allegation of child abuse of an amateur athlete who is a minor is immediately reported to law enforcement.

The bill revises duties of the Office of the Ombudsman regarding the pursuit of abuse claims by the U.S. Center for Safe Sport, confidentiality, and retaliation against an employee or member for disclosing information or seeking assistance in mediation. The USOPC and the national governing bodies shall not interfere in or attempt to influence the outcome of an investigation.

SURVIVOR’S AGENDA VIRUTAL TOWN HALL FOR ADULT SURVIVORS OF CHILDHOOD SEXUAL VIOLENCE

September 2020

In collaboration with the Me Too Movement, Darkness to Light, Together for Girls, and the SNAP Network, to hold a panel and Q&A with leading advocates across the nation so that we could hear from Adult Survivors of Childhood abuse. The objective was, as part of the Survivors Agenda Collective, to deeply listen to survivors, form a constituency of survivors, and call for a change in rules. With over 800 RSVPs, we had 300 survivors attend.

ATHLETE A PANEL AND SCREENING

August 2020

We partnered with the Athlete A film team to hold the first screening of their nationwide film tour. The panel was led by nationally recognized athletes, survivors, advocates and creators and discussed institutional abuse, how to hold organizations accountable, and what we as individuals can do to help. The event was attended by over 100 participants.

SHADES OF RACISM IN RAPE

July 2020

We partnered with I’m a Survivor Inc., She Will Speak Series, Voices Beyond Assault, and Voices of Hope to hold a discussion on why we have disproportionate views about violence, and why women of color experience higher rates of violence against them. Held by nationally recognized advocates of color, the panel educated participants on how the social narrative impacts women of color.

MENTAL HEALTH FIRST AID

January 2020

In January of 2020, The Army of Survivors held a Mental Health First Aid training to certify two dozen participants. Mental Health First Adi is an evidence-based curriculum for community members to learn how to identify risk factors and warning signs to mental health issues, information on a variety of mental illnesses and a 5 step action plan to help a person with a mental health problem or crisis.

global survivors bill of rights

October 2019

We spoke with Rise at the 2019 United Nations General Assembly pressing world leaders to pass a Global Survivor Bill of Rights. “UN General Assembly (UNGA) has never passed a resolution focused solely on sexual violence survivors’ rights. Around the world protesters are marching to demand recognition and justice for survivors who are denied basic rights and access to justice. For the first time in history, an UNGA Sexual Violence Survivors’ Rights Resolution would enshrine that survivors’ rights are fundamental human rights.”

October 2019-December 2019

We partnered with Voices of Hope during the holiday season to send non-denominational holiday cards with words of encouragement to domestic violence shelters across the nation. The cards are written by TAOS’s own board members and staff, as well as by students on campuses led by our Campus Ambassadors.

The Army of Survivors is proud to have worked with HBO and Global Sports Development to create and distribute resources in conjunction with the At the Heart of Gold: Inside the USA Gymnastics Scandal documentary premiere. We worked with several national nonprofit organizations to create a list of resources for survivors, parents, athletes, and communities. We also partnered to write a viewing support guide with important self-care practices for those who may have experienced assault or abuse and therefore have a hard time viewing the documentary.

January 2019–May 2019

In January 2019, a passionate team from the Graduate Employees Union at Michigan State University reached out to The Army to partner on adding survivor-centric language to the graduate employees’ contract for meaningful change at the University.

Together we reviewed the existing contract, which had no mention of relationship violence and sexual misconduct/RVSM, discussed changes, and developed recommendations. After grueling negotiations with the university, the union was able to make some key changes:

  1. The university committed to properly train teaching assistants on anti-discrimination and harassment (ADAH) and relationship violence and sexual misconduct (RVSM). The university committed to in-person RVSM training for teaching assistants that includes information on “sensitively responding to survivors” in addition to annual online training requirements. We interpret “sensitively responding” as responding supportively. To our knowledge, this is the first graduate union contract to include language about supporting survivors.
  2. The university agreed to provide teaching assistants with a standardized list of university and community resources to share with survivors.
  3. The university agreed to equitable representation for the GEU to provide input when the RVSM and ADAH policies are revised. The team hopes to use this concession to continue pushing MSU to make these policies more survivor-centric.
  4. The university agreed to make the process of filing a Title IX complaint more transparent by providing regular updates on the progress of Title IX investigations.

While there is still work to be done at MSU and across the nation, the tentative contract is a step in the right direction.

In January 2019, some talented and driven medical students from Michigan State Medical Society Medical Student Section (MSMS) reached out to The Army for advice on the policy for having chaperones present in exam rooms. The existing policy was written to focus on protecting physicians against “false allegations” rather than protecting patients from sexual abuse.

Working with the medical students, we discussed the challenges, intricacies, and necessities of this policy, as well as what constitutes a good victim-centered policy.

Then they put in the work.

The MSMS accepted the resulting proposal and it is now policy. Allies are working to turn this policy into state law in Michigan.

The Army of Survivors is proud to have been a part of this project and of the authors’ dedication and passion to making medical practices safer in Michigan.

January 2019–April 2019

The Michigan State University Museum and The Army of Survivors launched a roundtable discussion series to raise awareness and provide education on the effects of sexual violence. The series kicked off on Jan. 15, 2019. Four sessions were held at the MSU Museum and one session at the MSU Detroit Center.

The series touched on topics including trauma, consent, and healing. Panelists included Kate W ells from Michigan Radio’s podcast “Believed,” Rebecca Campbell, an MSU professor of psychology known for her research pertaining to sexual assault and violence against women and children, and survivors and advocates including Amanda Thomashow, who filed the MSU Title IX investigation against perpetrator Larry Nassar in 2014, and Louise Harder, Dr. Danielle Moore, and Melissa Hudecz, from The Army.

To view videos from panel discussion CLICK HERE.