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Reach out to your neighbours this White Ribbon Night

On Friday 28th July White Ribbon is calling on all Australians to connect with their neighbours to help prevent violence against women and host a White Ribbon Night.

White Ribbon CEO, Libby Davies said: “This year’s White Ribbon Night is focusing on the benefits of strengthening community relationships, and building support networks within our neighbourhoods which can help prevent the occurrence of domestic violence.”

Simone O’Brien, White Ribbon Advocate and mother of three, was brutally attacked by a former partner in 2012, surviving only because three of her neighbours raced to her aid. Following the attack, Simone spent a month in intensive care, her devastating injuries resulting in being reliant on life support, and forcing her children to prepare to say goodbye to their mother.

“I would not be here today if it wasn’t for the help of my neighbours. I owe them my life. I would encourage everyone to get to know their neighbours. You never know what’s happening behind someone’s door and when you or someone else may need a helping hand,” said Ms O’Brien.

Alarmingly, over 12 months, on average, one woman is killed every week in Australia as a result of intimate partner violence.

White Ribbon Ambassador, Associate Professor Michael Flood said: “If we can build communities with strong norms of respect, non-violence, and equality, this will have a powerful impact on rates of domestic and family violence. Perpetrators will feel far less able to get away with using violence, victims will find it easier to seek support and to escape violence, and friends and neighbours will be more likely to take action when they suspect there is abuse.”

Research conducted by VicHealth into community attitudes indicates 98% of survey respondents show they were likely to intervene if they knew a woman experiencing domestic violence.

“White Ribbon Night is an opportunity for Australians to reach out to their neighbours, start important conversations which raise awareness of domestic violence against women and build strong community bonds that could be lifesaving,” said Libby.

White Ribbon’s primary prevention initiatives aim to stop violence before it happens, through education, awareness raising and by challenging ingrained attitudes and power inequalities that give rise to men’s violence against women.

Funds raised through White Ribbon Night go towards prevention programs in schools, workplaces and the broader community.

To get involved by hosting a White Ribbon Night visit:
www.whiteribbon.org.au/night

Support White Ribbon by making a donation:
www.whiteribbon.org.au/donate

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Media and interview requests, please contact Irina Kamychnikova on 0426 221 550

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