Lighting up the night to remember victims of violence

Published 5:00am 27 April 2022

Lighting up the night to remember victims of violence
Words by Ashleigh Howarth

The Moreton Bay community will come together next week to remember those who have lost their lives to domestic and family violence by lighting a candle in their honour.

This year, Encircle will host three candle lighting ceremonies throughout the region on Wednesday, May 4, in what will be a sombre reminder of the men and women who have been killed by their partner, former partner, or by a member of their family.

The primary ceremony will be hosted at the Encircle Redcliffe Neighbourhood Centre, with a live stream and interactive ceremonies held at the Kallangur and Pine Rivers Neighbourhood Centres to extend the accessibility and participation in this important event.

The vigils will be held as part of Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month, which is held every year in May to raise community awareness and to send a clear message that violence in families and homes will not be tolerated.

Encircle’s Counselling and Families Manager Lisa Boyd says the night will be an opportunity for the community to take a stand against together.

“Violence against women is at epidemic proportions, and while men too are victims of domestic and family violence this is still recognised as a gendered crime against women and children,” Lisa says.

“Devastatingly, over 12 months, on average, one woman is killed every week in Australia because of intimate partner violence.

“Approximately one quarter of women in Australia have experienced at least one incident of violence by an intimate partner.

“These women’s lives are not just statistics – they are wives, mothers, daughters, granddaughters, sisters, aunts, nieces, friends and colleagues.

“Most importantly they are people, and the impact of the violence perpetrated against them is widespread and long-standing.”

If you are unable to attend in person, Encircle is encouraging community members to submit a photo of themselves or their family holding a lit candle, or simply a picture of a candle as a show of support for those impacted by domestic and family violence to the Encircle Redcliffe Neighbourhood Centre Facebook page.

Lighting up the night to remember victims of violence

Show your support

Lisa is once again hoping for a big turnout at the candlelight vigil, with 80-100 people attending in previous years.

The candle lighting ceremonies will be held from 5-6.30pm at the following locations:

Encircle Redcliffe Neighbourhood Centre

1 Lamington Drive, Redcliffe

Encircle Kallangur Neighbourhood Centre

51 Marsden Road, Kallangur

Encircle Pine Rivers Neighbourhood Centre

865 Gympie Road, Lawnton

Reach out for help

If you or someone you know needs help, there are plenty of services that can assist.

These include:

1800RESPECT

Phone: 1800 737 732

This is a 24-hour national sexual assault, family and domestic violence counselling line for any Australian who has experienced, or is at risk of, family and domestic violence and/or sexual assault.

DVConnect Womensline

Phone: 1800 811 811

This is a state-wide telephone service offering free professional and non-judgemental telephone support to women who are experiencing domestic or family violence. They can help women to obtain safe refuge accommodation, confidential counselling and referral to other services.

They are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

DVConnect Mensline

Phone: 1800 600 636

This is a state-wide telephone service offering free confidential counselling, referral and support to men affected by domestic and family violence seven days a week.

They are available from 9am-12 midnight.

Sexual Assault Helpline

Phone: 1800 010 120

This provides telephone support and counselling to anyone who has been sexually assaulted or abused, or for anyone who is concerned or suspects someone they care about might have been assaulted or abused.

They are available from 7.30am-11.30pm, seven days a week.

Kids Helpline

Phone: 1800 551 800

This is a national, free, private and confidential phone and counselling service for young people aged between five and 25 years of age.

They are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Lifeline

Phone: 13 11 14

This provides Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to crisis support and suicide prevention services.

They are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

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