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Student Support


What is the Sexual Harassment and Violence Support Service (SHVSS)?

The SHVSS provides trauma-informed emotional and practical support. The service is for registered students who have been subjected to any form of sexual harassment or violence and/or intimate partner abuse, recently or in the past.

We can support you whether this happened at University or not and can help you to access other available support services.

The SHVSS service is not counselling or therapy. SHVSS can offer you focused, short term, emotional support to look at managing the impact of what has happened.

If you would like counselling, you can make an appointment with the University Counselling Service.

Arranging an appointment

To arrange an appointment please complete a 'Pre-SHVSS Form' on our secure website. You do not need to give long answers; you can also put "I would prefer to talk about this in person" or “Prefer not to say”, if it is difficult to write about. 

You will need your Raven password to access this form.

The online form requires completion within 3 hours for security, after which it automatically shuts down. You can save your data in case the session is close to expiring.  We also recommend that you do not send the form from a mobile phone.

You can also contact the service by email:

This service only accepts self-referrals from students.

Who can access this service?

This service is available to any registered student at the University of Cambridge, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation. It does not matter when the incident/incidents occurred. We support people who have been impacted by sexual harassment or violence and/or intimate partner abuse at any point in their life.

What support does the service provide?

Trauma-informed emotional support:

  • Supporting you to understand and manage the impact of trauma and sexual violence.
  • Enabling you to develop positive coping strategies.
  • Helping you to re-build your self-esteem and trust in yourself and others.  

Practical support:

  • Providing you with impartial information and support around your options for reporting both within the University and externally.
  • Supporting you through any reporting process you choose to engage with.
  • Signposting and referring you to appropriate support services both within the University and externally.
Do I have to report if I receive support from the SHVSS?

You do not have to report your experience to the police or the University to access support from the SHVSS. The SHVSS can support you to explore your options for reporting what has happened. It  can also support you throughout this process if you do choose to go ahead.

Can I still use the service if I am not sure about what has happened?

If you are unsure about something that has happened and think it might be sexual harassment or violence then you are welcome to access the service and explore this with the SHVSS.

Will it be confidential?

The support is confidential, which means your situation will not be discussed with anyone outside the service, unless we have your consent to do so. Exceptions to this rule apply only if there are legal or statutory obligations to disclose, or if there is a risk of serious harm to the client or to others. For more information about this please see our Confidentiality Policy.

Do you support those who are in/were in abusive relationships?

Yes, we provide support to students who have experienced or are experiencing intimate partner abuse. This is regardless of whether you consider there to be a sexual abuse element to the abuse.

We can also support you to access other specialist services within the community if appropriate to your circumstances.

Contact the team

You can contact the Sexual Harassment and Violence Support Service by email on