May is Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month, an important time of year where we take the time to look at what we all can do to prevent domestic violence in our communities.
Uniting Country SA works to prevent and support the survivors of Domestic and Family Violence through their Domestic Violence Services which covers the Yorke and Mid North areas as well Coober Pedy, Port Augusta and Roxby Downs areas. UCSA works to provide services tailored to meet the individual needs of women and children, including:
– Support to clients still in a relationship to ensure they have all necessary information and safety plans to ensure that the client remains safe.
– Crisis support accommodation so women and children leaving an abusive relationship can have temporary accommodation and assistance in finding safe, secure and affordable long term accommodation.
– Post crisis support aimed at helping clients live a life free of violence and abuse.
Many people think of domestic violence as only being physical abuse but there are other types of abuse each as devastating as the other. They include emotional abuse, social abuse, sexual abuse, financial abuse, spiritual abuse, technology-facilitated abuse, and power abuse. Domestic and Family Violence happens in all kinds of relationships including, but not limited to, heterosexual partners, LGBTIQ+ partners, older people and their children, parents and their teenage children.
As we come to the end of May, it is important to reflect on what we can do to prevent Domestic and Family Violence in our communities.
Become an active bystander; If you see someone being harassed, and you feel safe to do so, take action. Taking action could mean calling the police, saying something to the perpetrator to diffuse the situation, showing the perpetrator that you are there and seeing what is happening, saying something to people with you about what you are seeing loud enough for the perpetrator to hear, or pretending to know the person being harassed or starting a conversation with them so they are not alone.
You can become more aware of what domestic violence is, take some time to learn more about the kinds of abuse and learn how abuse occurs so you can better recognise the signs.
Finally, if you are aware of a friend or family member who is in an abusive relationship, be there for that person. Offer them support, listen to them and believe them. Your help can make a difference.
If you would like to learn more about Domestic Violence, click here.
If you would like to support UCSA in its work helping Domestic and Family Violence survivors you can donate to UCSA here. Please give generously.