16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence is an annual campaign run by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership, it calls for action to end gender-based violence in our communities. Each year, the 16 Days begin on 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and runs until 10 December, International Human Rights Day.
16 Days of Activism gives us the opportunity to highlight the devastating effects of family violence on our Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Communities,how VACCA supports children and families experiencing family violence and how we can all take action to end gender-based violence.
Family violence statistics for Aboriginal women are alarming., Indigenous women experience family violence at a rate significantly higher than non-Indigenous women. Indigenous women are 32 times more likely to be hospitalised as a result of family violence (I), and are 11 times more likely to die as a result of family violence than non-Indigenous women (II). Aboriginal women also make up the majority of homicide victims killed by a former partner, at a rate double that of non-Aboriginal victims (III).
Family Violence & Children
Children living in a household where family violence occurs are more likely to suffer from severe mental health issues, homelessness and and are at much higher risk of becoming perpetrators of family violence and other violent crimes in future. Family Violence is the biggest driver of child removal in Indigenous communities, 77% of children who experience family violence will have an interaction with the justice system within less than 5 years (IV). No child deserves the emotional and physical wounds that family violence inflicts.
Supports For Children & Families
VACCA supports women, children, young people and families experiencing family violence with a range of services to help them heal and move forward with their lives.
Using a wraparound support model, our culturally-led programs and services take a holistic approach to supporting women, children and families experiencing or recovering from family violence. VACCA supports women and families with access to short-term crisis support, therapeutic programs, and early intervention and prevention supports. We can also provide referrals for other support services outside of VACCA.
Take action – What You Can Do
Start meaningful conversations about family violence to help create change in your community – it’s up to all of us to call out violence.
Listen without judgement if someone shares their experience, believe and never blame them for what is happening
Check in on your loved ones and watch for the signs of abuse.
Where to find support
If you or someone you know is experiencing family violence, support services are available now: https://www.vacca.org/page/contact/needing-help-now
To find out more about in VACCA’s programs and services in your region, please contact your closest VACCA office: https://www.vacca.org/page/contact/locations
I. Australian Institute of Health & Welfare (2019): Family Domestic and Sexual Violence in Australia
II. Our Watch (2018): Changing the Picture: a national resource to support the prevention of violence against Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander women and their children
III. Australian Institute of Health & Welfare (2019): Family, Domestic & Sexual Violence in Australia: continuing the national story
IV. Crime Statistics Agency (2020): Child Witnesses of family violence: An examination of Victoria Police Family Violence data