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Message from the Mayor – join the conversation and ACT NOW to end family violence in Cardinia Shire

Published: 21 April 2016

None of us like the top-down approach when it comes to making changes. When we have control over change, it is then that change seems to have a more lasting impression.

That is what is unique to the ‘Together We Can’ initiative in Cardinia Shire.

Funded as a joint initiative between Cardinia Shire Council, Family Life, University of Melbourne and the Australian Government’s Department of Social Services, it gives us, the people, the chance to design our own plan for change when it comes to the frightening rate of family violence that is occurring across the shire.

To enable us all to join the conversation and design our own unique way to end family violence, facilitators of the project have provided an online opportunity for us to contribute to the conversation, to talk about the impacts of family violence and share ideas of how it can be prevented and stopped.

The conversations that we have, both online and at the community convention held on Thursday 28 April at the Cardinia Cultural Centre will contribute to the design of an action plan that business, government, sport and recreation, community support services, health and education services and us, the community will make happen.

So what is in it for us to get involved?

Firstly, and most importantly, our children will be safe and free from harm in the family home. And as they grow older, they will be more resilient and better understand what respectful relationships mean and how to recognise the warning signs of an unhealthy relationship.

We will have more gender balance, where men and women are equally valued for their differences, and their likenesses, and where we all know that violence will never resolve issues.

The money the government needs to spend dealing with family violence victims and perpetrators will become less and less, affording us more money to develop Cardinia Shire as a great place to work, live, learn, play and run a business.

Many of us may think that it does not affect us and so we do not need to worry about doing anything about it.  But when one in three women are violated by violence between the ages of 15 and 44, for many, it is just a matter of time before it is time to worry about it.  That is why ‘Together We Can’ is so important and why we are all being encouraged to get on board and join the conversation to make a stand against family violence.

For more information or to register for the Together We Can convention visit or join the Together We Can Facebook group.

If you are experiencing family violence call the safe steps 24/7 Family Violence Response Centre on 1800 015 188.

Mayor Cr Jodie Owen

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