Stop the violence. Break the silence.

Purple Ribbon Day at Westside Plaza saw a steady stream of passers-by stop for a chat with representatives from various Far West domestic violence and sexual assault support services gathered to send one very clear message to our community – Stop the violence. Break the silence – by raising awareness and generating a community conversation around taboo topics such as domestic violence and sexual assault of children.

Staying Home Leaving Violence (Broken Hill and Wentworth branches), Warra-Warra Legal Service, Far West Community Legal Centre, and the Women’s Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Services united for a Purple Ribbon Day event, Thursday July 13, handing out information brochures and chatting with people about the various support services available to victim-survivors around our region.

Helping to raise awareness about domestic violence (DV) and supporting services since the 1980s, the most senior member of the DV Committee, Pam Clarke, was there demonstrating that age doesn’t have to be a barrier in being of service to your community.

“I feel honoured to still be involved in helping our wonderful community,” said Ms Clarke. “I’ll keep standing with these services for as long as I can because I care deeply for the residents of this region.”

Domestic Violence Committee member, Chris Smith, filled us in on what they’ve been doing to support victim-survivors of DV.

“This year I’m personally committed to doing things bigger and better to support people in our community. I’m gathering donations, picking them up, sorting them out, and delivering packages directly to the services,” Ms Smith told the Barrier Truth when we stopped by the Purple Ribbon Day information stand for a chat.

We’re asking for donations of all sizes of clothing and shoes, including for babies, infants, children, and teens, plus toys, household items like dinner sets, cutlery, linen, and so on,” she said. “Friends brought 24 bags to Broken Hill from Adelaide, so if you don’t have anything to donate, we ask that you let others know we’re collecting goods to supply to the services that work directly with the victim-survivors of DV.”

“The donations will be given to people around the Far West including Broken Hill, Menindee, Wilcannia and Wentworth, and we’re also supporting Don Barron with Feeding Friends by gathering donations of frozen food, water, sanitary items, and warm clothing for homeless men and women,” said Ms Smith.

“We’ve teamed up with Woolworths who’ve recently started contributing items. Later in the year, we’ll be gathering sanitary products for Far West DV services Sharing The Dignity month in November, and Bags in November where we’ll be asking people to donate handbags that we can turn into care packages containing shampoo, toothbrushes, and so on for people leaving DV,” she said.

To donate to the DV services, please contact Chris Smith on 0409 801 777.

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