West wins funds for violence prevention

1 June 2012

Women’s Health West was one of only eleven organisations nationwide to secure funds from the federal government to encourage healthy relationships among young people as a way of reducing violence against women.

We will use the funds to implement Me, You and Us – a three-year respectful relationships education program with young women in the western region.

Me, You and Us is a multi-faceted program that will train and support forty-eight young women (18 to 24 years) to become ‘youth ambassadors’ in the primary prevention of violence against women.

The project will deliver respectful relationships education in youth organisations and to senior primary school students in the western metropolitan region of Melbourne.

‘Women’s Health West is delighted,’ said Dr Robyn Gregory, CEO. ‘This much needed funding allows us to strengthen and broaden our prevention of violence against women work with young people in the region.

‘Over one in three Australian women experience physical violence during their lifetime, and nearly one in five experience some form of sexual assault.

‘Victoria Police crime data shows that women in the western region of Melbourne are particularly at risk of violence from their intimate partners, with a rate that is higher than the state average.

‘Violence against women is preventable though. By responding to the causes of violence against women – such as disrespectful relationships and unequal power relations between women and men – it is possible to change the underlying factors that cause violence, and stop it from happening.

‘Our ultimate vision is for all communities, cultures and organisations in the western region to be non-violent, non-discriminatory, gender equitable and promote respectful relationships.’

The funding is part of the Australian Government’s $86 million National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children 2010-2022.