A special community event shining a light on the important issue of domestic violence will be held in Nowra later this month.
Shoalhaven White Ribbon Day will be held on Wednesday, November 21 in Jellybean Park in the Nowra CBD.
Local services, business and community members will join together to highlight domestic violence.
White Ribbon Day, held in November each year, is a campaign to stop men’s violence towards women.
According to statistics, each week a woman dies at the hands of her partner.
Wellways, a mental health, disability and community support organisation working with people at the grassroots level will host the event with the Police Aboriginal Consultative Committee (PACC).
PACC is made up of the NSW Police and a number of local organisations and community members.
A number of local organisations and services including Cullunghutti Child and Family Centre, local elders, Prime Minister and Cabinets Office, Shoalhaven City Council, Corporate Connexions, YWCA, NSW Justice, Waminda Aboriginal Medical Centre, Ulladulla Aboriginal Land Council, NSW Education, Shoalcoast, South Coast Aboriginal Medical Service, NSW Dept Human Services and NSW Legal Aid have thrown their support behind the community event.
Local business owner and Shoalhaven resident Scott Gorrell from Egan’s Lane Café has also backed the event and will be allowing his premises to be used to provide a fundraising sausage sizzle on the day.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, four per cent of people in NSW experienced some form of emotional abuse last year.
And each week the media reports of lives lost to domestic violence.
“Family and domestic violence are concerns for us all, no matter where we live,” said Kathleen Vangelovski, from Wellways’ Enhanced Adult Community Living Support Service.
“It is a troubling health and welfare issue with no easy answers. It requires a united community approach.
“We believe more needs to be done in mental health support and intervention, before people resort to violence.”
She said people were falling through cracks in the system.
“We want to assist in breaking down the barriers between services, police and the community – while raising awareness about support services available in the region,” she said.
“Many of our participants have experienced domestic violence during their lifetime - either as a victim or sometimes as a perpetrator.
“We want to contribute to a solution in any positive way we can. There is always hope for recovery.”
Domestic violence occurs across all ages, socioeconomic and demographic groups but mainly affects women and children.
Indigenous women, young women and pregnant women are particularly at risk.
Statistics say one in four women have experienced physical violence since the age of 15.
As well as a wonderful array of local services that will be available to provide information on domestic violence issues, food and drinks will also be available on the day.