Support after sexual assault

What you can do

Know that you are in control of what happens next. There is no right or wrong way to act following a rape or sexual assault. It is important that you are informed of the options around reporting this and/or accessing support with this. NTU has close links to the services in Nottingham and is able to offer information to help you to choose what you do next.


Immediate considerations

  • Consider getting medical help as soon as possible, because you may be at risk of pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
  • If you want or think that you might want the crime to be investigated, a forensic medical examination should take place as soon as possible after the assault and within seven days. If the assault occurred more than seven days ago, it is still worth asking for advice from a Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) or the police about a forensic medical examination. If you haven’t decided whether to involve the police, any forensic medical evidence that's collected will be stored at the SARC to allow you time to decide if you do want to report the assault. TheSite is an organisation for young people that has made a video about what to expect if you visit a SARC. Nottingham’s SARC is called the Topaz Centre.
  • It is helpful if you do not wash, bathe or change your clothes before a forensic examination.



We strongly encourage you to report any incidents of sexual assault or rape, even if you don’t know the perpetrator, feel you have any evidence or want to take it any further. Someone will listen, and help you find appropriate support. Reporting incidents also helps NTU and/or the police to note trends such as repeated incidents in a certain area of town. The police can gather intelligence on specific individuals where concerns may have been raised by others in the past.

Reporting to NTU

Please make sure that a member of staff in the university is aware of your circumstances and can help you to deal with any impact on your studies. You can talk to Student Support Services or NTSU Information & Advice Service about options for your studies, e.g time out, NEC.


If the person or people that assaulted you are NTU students, this can be reported to a member of University staff, e.g. Warden, Tutor, Student Support Services and can be investigated under the Student Code of Behaviour.


You would need to meet with and give a statement to an investigating Officer and the accused student would be asked to do the same. Behaviour that breaches the Student Code of Behaviour can result in very serious consequences, including expulsion from the University.


Reporting to the police

Rape and sexual assault are serious criminal offences. You can report to the police regardless of whether you feel that you have evidence or don’t know the offender. The police will investigate incidents that are reported to them. If you do not wish this to be pursued by the police at any point, it is your right to say so and this will be respected unless there are issues that mean the safety of others may be at risk.

You can report a crime in several ways:

If it’s an emergency and the crime is still taking place or you or someone else is at current risk, call 999 and ask for the police. If it’s not an emergency, ring the 101 non-emergency number or go to your local police station. You can find the address and telephone number online.


Historic incidents

For reporting purposes, the police define a rape or sexual assault as historic if is it is reported more than a calendar year after the event. It is recognised that the traumatic nature of this offence may lead to delays between the crime and the reporting of the crime. This does not mean that it will be taken any less seriously.


Support services

Student Support Services can provide confidential guidance and support to all students on consent and assault matters, including information on specialist services and support with practical and academic issues.


Help with the impact on your studies

You can talk to Student Support Services or NTSU Student Advice and Information Service if your studies have been affected by sexual assault.


External Services

The Consent Coalition

The Consent Coalition is a group of organisations within Nottingham who are working together to raise awareness of the importance of consent, banish myths about rape and sexual violence and encourage survivors and victims to access support and report any sexual violence.
You can download 'Your Journey' our guide for survivors of sexual violence. The guide gives information on the support available, what it is like to make a report and answers some of the questions you may have.


The Topaz Centre


Nottinghamshire’s Sexual Assault referral Centre (SARC).

Helpline: 0845 600 15 88 to discuss your options or self-refer


Nottingham Sexual Violence Support Services (NSVSS)

Helpline and counselling for female survivors of rape and sexual abuse. Visit the Nottingham Sexual Violence Support Services website or telephone 0115 941 0440.


Survivors UK

Offers support for men who have experienced childhood sexual abuse and/or adult assault/rape. Visit Survivors UK website or telephone 0203 598 3898.


Women's Aid

Offers support for cis women. Visit Women's Aid website or telephone the domestic violence helpline on 0808 8000 340.