This woman's powerful 'toolkit for rape recovery' is helping other survivors

"Hey." Noa Maiman takes a deep breath and looks at the camera. "Welcome to the toolkit for a fresh rape victim."

In webcam videos, Noa, a documentary maker, has been vlogging in Hebrew and English about her experience of date rape at the age of 20 and the trauma and recovery process since then.

Speaking to i100, Noa said she got the idea for the series after someone who said she was a rape victim said the themes of one of Noa's documentaries had spoken to her.

Noa said the woman’s comments made her reflect on her own experiences, realising that talking to people with similar stories had helped her too.

Now decided she wanted to make a practical tool - the Toolkit for Rape Recovery.

The topics are all drawn from Noa's personal experiences, ranging from practical issues, like how to tell people what happened, to coping with feelings of grief and blame, and advice on how to approach relationships with family, friends and parters who might be affected by your symptoms.

There have been nine episodes so far, and Noa thinks she will make 12 in total. Originally the series was called 'Toolkit for the fresh rape victim', but as Noa's feelings of anger have subsided, she changed the name to 'Toolkit for rape recovery' to reflect the progress she feels she has made since the series began.

It was hard to begin with, very hard. But if I look back on how I felt when I started... I am a different person. I don't think of myself as a victim anymore.

I'm going through a real process... It’s like making a documentary, it’s a personal story that relates to everyone.

The first video went up in 2014, and since then the episodes have slowly but steadily been shared by viewers who tell Noa that they relate to what she talks about and her videos are helpful for their own recoveries.

It's a conversation, and this is my journey but I have come across so many other women on their own journeys since then.

The most important thing, she added, is that people need to talk more about sexual violence and its effects, because the more out in the open the issues are, the easier they are to deal with.

The more we talk about it the easier it gets.

One in four of us are victims at some point. I ask people to share the videos because you never know who it might help.

Watch the first in Noa's series below:

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