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Prevention of violence against women and children

Sad woman looks out of a window.

Mount Alexander Shire Council is committed to preventing violence against women and children through promoting gender equity. Our focus is on the prevention of violence before it occurs.

We are actively working with the community to reduce family violence in the following ways:

16 Days of Activism 2021

Each year, from 25 November (International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women) to 10 December, World Human Rights Day, the 16 Days of Activism campaign calls for action against one of the world’s most persistent violations of human rights – violence against women.

During the 16 Days of Activism, people around the world unite to raise awareness about gender-based violence, challenge discriminatory attitudes and call for improved laws and services to end violence against women for good.

The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence is an initiative that Council strongly supports. As part of this initiative, Mount Alexander Shire Council, in partnership with the Mount Alexander Family Violence Prevention Network, is supporting Respect Victoria’s Respect:Call it Out campaign during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence.

The following activities have been planned for our community to come together, get involved and raise awareness about gender based violence.

Community 'Visual' Vigil 25 November to 10 December
Each night between 9pm and 10pm of the 16 Days of Activism, the Town Hall in Castlemaine will be illuminated with an artistic representation of the local statistics of people impacted by family violence.

In 2021, Respect Victoria, Domestic Violence Victoria and Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria are partnering to deliver and support local engagement in the 16 Days of Activism grassroots initiative. Mount Alexander Shire Council has been funded through this initiative.

Portrait Prize 4 Respect
Calling on all in the community to have-a-go and draw a portrait of a person who challenges gender stereotypes and inequality. There are prizes to be won and all entries will be exhibited at Castlemaine’s Phee Broadway Foyer during the 16 days campaign. The Portrait Prize 4 Respect is a community led activity supported by Mount Alexander Shire Council, Department of Health, Families, Fairness and Housing, and Women's Health Loddon Mallee. Entries close 24 November.
To enter download a form from www.figureitlifedrawing.com/.

Other ways to get involved
- Visit the library to view their book display on gender equality
- Listen to MAINfm for interviews with community members and support services
- Check out the video information displayed at Council, Castlemaine Library and local community organisations
- Attend a webinar delivered by Women's Health Loddon Mallee bookings via www.whlm.org.au/events/
*25 Nov, 10am-11:30am - Bystander Action Panel - Real World Responses to Gender Inequality
*30 Nov, 10am-11:00am - The experiences of refugee women with guest Nyadol Nyuon
- Be an Active Bystander:
* Challenge sexist jokes, discrimination and disrespect wherever you see it
* Challenge traditional gender stereotypes and roles
* Support equality and inclusion in the home, workplace, community and everywhere

Please note all activities will be held according to COVID-19 restrictions and guidelines.

Download the 16 Days of Activism poster to see What's On

For more information about the 16 Days of Activism campaign or for ideas and resources to get involved please visit Domestic Violence Victoria's website.

If you or someone you know is experiencing family violence, help is available.

- Centre for Non-Violence 1800 884 292
- Orange Door Loddon 1800 290 943
- 1800 RESPECT (24 hrs) 1800 737 732
- Rainbow Door 1800 729 367
- Safe Steps (24 hrs) 1800 015 188
- Kids Helpline (24hrs) 1800 551 800
- Men's Referral Service 1300 766 491
- Men's Line (24 hrs) 1300 78 99 78

Breaking the Silence Card

Developed in partnership with the City of Greater Bendigo and Macedon Ranges Shire Council, this resource card lists local and state-based services available to people experiencing, or at risk of, family violence.

The Breaking the Silence card also aims to educate the community about available services, as well as signs or behaviours that indicate someone is experiencing family violence.

The card is available at community hubs around the shire including Castlemaine Community House, Castlemaine District Community Health, Castlemaine Health, Castlemaine Library, Civic Centre, Maldon Hospital, Maldon Neighbourhood Centre, and Newstead Rural Transaction Centre.

View the Breaking the Silence Card.

Family violence support services and crisis contacts

Listed below are a range of local and statewide services to assist women, men and young people who have experienced violence, or are in potentially violent situations.

Service What they provide How to contact
Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre Crisis support line, 24 hours, 7 days 1800 015 188
1800RESPECT National sexual assault and family violence counselling service 24hrs/7 days 1800 737 732
After Hours Sexual Assault Crisis Line Crisis counselling for survivors of both recent and past sexual assault 1800 806 292 After hours support 5:00pm weeknight through to 9:00am next day and throughout weekends and public holidays
Castlemaine District Community Health Counselling support for individuals, family, children and young people 5479 1000
Hospital (Castlemaine Health) For urgent medical assistance use the Urgent Care Centre 5471 1555
Police For all emergencies 000

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