Residents from all walks of life came together last week to chat and shine a light on domestic violence.
The wine and cheese night at Byford and Districts Country Club was organised by Jennifer Kish in conjunction with White Ribbon Australia’s Cheese for Change campaign.
Mrs Kish said she had organised a similar event about five years ago after a friend of hers had lost a friend through suicide due to domestic violence.
“My cousin also knew a dentist that had gone missing in Sydney who was murdered by her ex-partner and he ended up killing himself,” she said.
“I thought domestic violence is obviously still happening and it doesn’t matter who you are, where you live, it is happening everywhere.”
Mrs Kish said the event attracted about 25 people who raised about $600 for White Ribbon Australia and about $300 for Byford Uniting Church who provide support and care for people in the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale affected by domestic violence.
“I think unfortunately with domestic violence even if you haven’t been affected yourself personally, you may know someone who has been,” she said.
“The event allowed guests to share stories, with one lady speaking about her mother being a victim of domestic violence but during that time there was nowhere to go to for help.”
White Ribbon chief executive Delia Donovan said while there is a lot of public discourse about domestic violence and abuse of women, everyone in the community should be focused on addressing what is behind gendered violence.
“The solution to ending men’s violence against women is through behaviour and attitude change,” she said.
“Already this year 14 women have been murdered and that is more than one woman a week. Still a large number of women are being assaulted, harassed and physically abused and this needs to end.”
If you or someone you know is experiencing violence call 1800 737 732 or in an emergency call the police on 000.
All incidents of violence should be reported to police.
Photographs – Aaron Van Rongen