Community gathers to put a stop to domestic violence

CANDLE LIT VIGIL HELD: Members of the Limestone Coast Family Violence Action Group and Soroptimist International Mount Gambier Katherine Davies, Paula McCubbin, Georgina Davidson, Tarsh Beralds, Nicola and Jane Zeitz as they light a candle in remembrance of those who have lost their lives to family and domestic violence.

Charlotte Varcoe

CANDLES lit up the Cave Gardens on Wednesday night as community members gathered to remember women who have lost their lives as a result of family and domestic violence.

Organised by the Limestone Coast Family Violence Action Group and Soroptimist International Mount Gambier, attendees gathered to listen to guest speaker Kellie, from the Voices for Change.

Kellie spoke on her own experience with family and domestic violence to the gathered community group.

Action Group secretary Katherine Davies said the event was more important than ever after three lives were lost in the South East as a result of domestic violence within the past four years.

Across Australia, 18 people have been killed this year due to domestic violence.

“The statistics we see are unfortunately consistent that there is at least one life lost to domestic violence each week,” Ms Davies said.

“Holding this vigil is our opportunity to commemorate those lives and keep that conversation going on domestic and family violence while making sure it is not a silent issue.”

Ms Davies said hosting the event allowed community members to remain engaged and encouraged those needing help to reach out.

“We have fantastic resources down here in the Limestone Coast and a lot of our community services are engaged with the Family Violence Action Group and we also have a fantastic team at the Limestone Coast Domestic Violence service through Centacare,” she said.

“We all know more funding for the issue across Australia could go a long way but through the action group we are ensuring we are all engaged in our services locally which helps those who need to reach out.

“We think it was fantastic of the community to come out once again and support one another as they do each year.”

For those in need of urgent assistance or are concerned for their safety, please contact Emergency Services 000, 1800 RESPECT or the Domestic Violence Crisis Line 1800 800 098 for assistance and support.