Not My Fault hopes to raise awareness about sexual assault

The organization recently held a "Cookies & Convos" meet-and-greet, according to its Instagram page.

Not My Fault, founded by senior Aasiyah Khan, a developmental psychology major, is an organization that focuses on raising awareness about sexual assault.

The group shares information regarding resources for victims and preventative measures for communities. It also actively participates in campus culture by holding safe space circles, personal defense instruction courses, education seminars and hosting rallies.

 “I started [Not My Fault] when I realized how common acts of sexual violence are on college campuses but how little we talk about them as a community,” Khan said. “I wanted to create a safe space for students to share their personal stories that are so often dismissed. [Not My Fault] offers students the help and peer support survivors often do not receive.”

McKenna Lorenz, a third-year biology major and member of Not My Fault, said that it was the information offered by the organization to the public that made her join the organization.

“I wanted to have more resources and knowledge about sexual assault, such as where women can go for support,” she said.

Not My Fault is not only a resource for victims of sexual assault on campus. Among other initiatives, it serves the surrounding areas of Detroit Mercy through donation and collection drives.

In the spring of 2022, the group hosted a Clothing-Hygiene Drive for the Turning Point women’s shelter in Macomb County. Uplifting and supporting the survivors of sexual assault, while preventing future assault, is what Not My Fault is all about.

“I hope we can build a safe circle… that people can come to when they are going through things and want access to resources and/or support,” Lorenz said.

In August of 2021, WXYZ News reported that Detroit saw a 23 percent increase in reported sexual assaults. The Detroit Police Department said that the preceding lockdowns of COVID-19 may have contributed to the statistical growth being so high due to a lack of reporting during the height of isolation.

Still, advocates of sexual assault refuted this by tracing increasing rates of reported sexual assault as far back as 2019. With UDM being surrounded by a community that is struggling with sexual assault, Not My Fault serves as a refuge and safe space for victims.

The group often collaborates with other organizations on campus to maximize the growth of the community of support they aim to build.

Recently, Not My Fault announced a partnership with Safe Space Circle for an event that intends to “create a safe space on campus to discuss issues related to sexual violence and show support for all those affected.”

Prior to this, near finals week last semester, Not My Fault – along with the Detroit Mercy Honors College, sorority Sigma Sigma Sigma and the Detroit Mercy Feminist Coalition – hosted “PJ’s Against the Patriarchy.” This event functioned as both a way to raise awareness about the various intersectional philanthropies of these organizations and as a way for attendees to de-stress ahead of exams. Not My Fault has also partnered with the Women’s and Gender Studies department to host a marching demonstration around the campus area.

The group invites all people on campus to become advocates. If you’d like to get involved with the organization, you may find more information on their Instagram account, @notmyfaultudm.