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20 May 2022

Media releases

Supporting U equips multicultural women’s agencies to be allies within their communities

Settlement Services International (SSI) last night launched a series of videos as part of its Supporting U program, an innovative project aimed at equipping women leaders within culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities with the skills to support women in crisis.

The purpose of the video series is to educate the wider community, including domestic and family violence (DFV) organisations, and generate discussion among community groups by sharing the culturally nuanced reflections on marital relationships and DFV from women of different backgrounds.

Minister for Women’s Safety and the Prevention of Domestic and Sexual Violence Natalie Ward said Supporting U was a critical program that built the capacity of women leaders to support victim-survivors of DFV in their own communities.

“Domestic and family violence is a key issue faced by our communities and it’s vital we come together to understand how we can best support all women who need help,” Mrs Ward said.

“The Supporting U videos are powerful and provide a valuable insight into the different cultures within our refugee and migrant communities. I thank the women who have shared their stories for their bravery and for being an important part of this project.”

Minister for Women Bronnie Taylor said the innovative program would empower women and communities across NSW.

“These videos will create real change, supporting women, families and communities to prevent domestic and family violence,” Mrs Taylor said.

Violet Roumeliotis, CEO of SSI, said the program was highly successful in engaging women to become Supporting Responders and creating change within their communities.

“Supporting U leaders not only provide valuable guidance and support for women facing crisis; they can also drive change within their communities and work with other community and religious leaders to give them the tools and information they need to support women.

“Strengthening the community with the right tools to support their people is highly powerful and will ensure the greatest results,” Ms Roumeliotis said.

Supporting U offered accredited training and ongoing support through Learning Circles to 36 women leaders across NSW to become Supporting Social Responders.

The video series was created to capture the valuable insights and stories of the Supporting U leaders.

The videos reflect stories from the following cultures: Africa, East Asia, Middle East, South East Asia, and South Asia, as well as regional Australia.

The identities of the women in the videos have been concealed because of the risk of being ostracised by their community for the role they play in supporting women.

The project was funded under the COVID-19 Domestic and Family Violence Grant by Women NSW.

Learn more about the Supporting U Project and watch the videos here.

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