WSA organises, and participates in, a variety of awareness-raising activities each year around the importance of healthy relationships. Information about support options around domestic violence and homelessness is prepared and made available to the community in a number of ways.
These include …
‘Healthy Relationships’ Art exhibition
‘Reclaim the Night’ march and rally
‘Healthy Relationship’ flags flying from Armidale’s mall flagpoles at certain times of the year
Written material outlining available support options posted in public areas.
Information pamphlets about the assistance people experiencing homelessness can access.
Domestic & Family Violence & Homelessness Prevention Programs for Schools
Current research clearly indicates that children start to learn very early in their lives, how relationships look and feel. They learn how people behave towards each other and how they are expected to relate to others. Children growing up in abusive families are likely to learn the behaviors they see. People, including very young people, who are experiencing or witnessing domestic or family violence may change the way they think of the abuse, to make it feel less distressing. In this way, people can become more accepting of the abuse which lessens the pain, but makes it more difficult to recognise the seriousness of the problem. This can make people more likely to become involved in abusive relationships themselves. Once established, attitudes can be very difficult to change. Educating children about healthy relationships is our best opportunity for preventing domestic & family violence in the future.
The Moving Forward program is a domestic violence prevention program for school students. Age-appropriate programs are run for students of different ages providing relevant and appropriate information. The program for younger students focuses on the characteristics and importance of healthy relationships, as well as protective strategies for physical and psychological safety. The program for older children includes this information, but also focuses on identifying and challenging attitudes towards domestic violence.