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Anti-violence against women NGO “White Ribbon” boosted with $80,000 grant


White Ribbon NGO
White Ribbon NGO, photo by W. Duncan

White Ribbon Australia CEO Libby Davies said that increasing awareness about the foundation and its objectives among multicultural groups was integral to its success. White Ribbon is a national, male-led campaign to end violence against women.

“NSW is one of the most culturally diverse societies in the world so it makes sense for us to develop strategies to broaden our reach within migrant communities and to partner with influential men, including religious leaders, who represent them.

Minister for Citizenship and Communities Victor Dominello Friday July 25 announced the NSW Government would provide $80,000 to White Ribbon Australia to strengthen engagement with culturally diverse communities and increase awareness about violence against women.

Those who attended the  grant ceremony together with Minister Dominello  and White Ribbon’s Libby Davies included Nick Kaldas (NSW Police), Emma Sharobeem (Immigrant Women’s Health), NSW Member for Granville Tony Isa, NSW Member for Parramatta Geoff Lee, Harry Harinath (CRC), Jimmy Mtasha (White Ribbon Ambassador), and Khaled Sukkarieh (White Ribbon Ambassador).

The announcement was made in the lead up to White Ribbon Night, a new initiative which encourages Australians to “have a night in to get the word out” by participating in fundraising events to raise awareness about the impact of violence against women.

“The NSW Government, through the Community Relation Commission, is proud to partner with White Ribbon to tackle violence against women and support agencies like NSW Police to sign up to its Workplace Accreditation Program.

“It is recognised that migrant and refugee communities often face unique challenges before and during the resettlement process which may impact upon their understandings of domestic violence.

“In the past decade NSW has welcomed over 30,000 humanitarian refugees and this funding is about ensuring White Ribbon’s message is accessible to all communities regardless of cultural background or language,” Mr Dominello said.

The partnership will focus on:

·         Raising the profile of White Ribbon among men from culturally diverse communities;

·         Accrediting NSW Government agencies under White Ribbon’s Workplace Accreditation Program, starting with NSW Police;

·         Recruiting ambassadors from culturally diverse backgrounds and increasing the involvement of religious leaders; and

·         Developing culturally appropriate resources in the most relevant community languages, including an online calendar of White Ribbon activities

 “The NSW Government’s funding will enable us to better target our campaigns to men from culturally diverse communities.   

“We currently have 27 employers accredited under the Workplace Accreditation Program reaching 84,000 employees across Australia. 

“An important part of this partnership will be to encourage the first NSW Government agencies to sign up to the WAP, which recognises workplaces that take active steps to prevent and respond to violence against women,” Ms Davies said.


NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Nick Kaldas APM commended the partnership and said his organisation supported White Ribbon’s efforts to strengthen multicultural engagement.

“We deal with around 370 cases of domestic and family violence every day, so we are certainly on the frontline in responding to this issue.

“As an organisation we are committed to reducing the damning statistics and we look forward to working with White Ribbon to implement and adhere to best practice policies within our own workplace,” Mr Kaldas said.

Mr Dominello commended NSW Police’s commitment to become one of the first NSW government agencies accredited under the program.

“NSW Police has over 15,000 employees and is renowned for its strong engagement with multicultural communities, so I welcome its leadership in this campaign,” Mr Dominello said.

White Ribbon is a national, male-led campaign to end violence against women which began in 2003 as UNIFEM before becoming a foundation in 2007. The campaign, which originated in Canada in 1991, is today active in over 60 countries.

 The campaign works through primary prevention initiatives involving awareness raising and education, and programs with youth, schools, workplaces and across the broader community.

Globally, White Ribbon is the world’s largest male-led movement to end men’s violence against women. Originating in Canada in 1991, White Ribbon is now active in more than 60 countries.

White Ribbon began in Australia in 2003 as part of UNIFEM (now UN Women), formally becoming a Foundation in 2007.

White Ribbon Australia observes the International Day of the Elimination of Violence against Women, also known as White Ribbon Day, annually on November 25. White Ribbon Day signals the start of the 16 Days of Activism to Stop Violence against Women, which ends on Human Rights Day (December 10).

But the campaign runs all year and is evident across the community through, for example, advertising and marketing campaigns such as Uncover Secrets, social media, community events and White Ribbon Night in July.