• Jackie McGregor

White Ribbon Event #notinmyclub

A “first of its kind” project was launched on the Sunshine Coast this week aimed at combating domestic violence through educating members of sporting clubs. The “Sunshine Coast Sports – Speak Up Project” is the first of its kind in Australia and was introduced to our members at a presentation Tuesday night. The hour long presentation (#notinmyclub) provided Club members with tools to identify and prevent behaviour known to lead domestic violence.

The project is an initiative of White Ribbon Australia and Sunshine Coast Police in conjunction with local sporting clubs. Alex Surf Club has been included as one of only five local clubs involved in the project. Ashley Robinson has been pivotal in establishing the project which follows in the steps of similar successful programs already operating in sporting clubs in Victoria and NSW.

Mr Liam Dooley and Alexander Taylor-Pitcher from White Ribbon Australia both travelled from Sydney to deliver the presentation. Liam said that “Sport is a critical channel for raising awareness of the importance of respectful relationships throughout codes, clubs, members and fans. Millions of men, women, boys and girls play sport at some point in their lives, and it is important that the prevention of men’s violence against women is incorporated into training, games, events and broadcasting to reach further into the community and highlight a zero tolerance approach.”

Around 50 members attended from a range of age groups, and the presenters were impressed with the large number of younger generation (ie under 30’s) men and women in the audience. Liam and Alex provided us with the opportunity to improve our knowledge and ability to identify inappropriate behaviour and language. They also suggested some tools to prevent this type of behaviour permeating our Club. We have a very successful Surf Club here at Alex with a high female participation rate all aspects of the Club including surf sports, patrols and our nipper program. I would personally like to thank the founders of the “Sunshine Coast Sports Speak Up Project”, Liam, Darryl, Ashley, Tyson and Alex, for giving the Club the opportunity to be involved in this very important movement.”

We are encouraging all members to ‘take the oath’ against domestic violence at the White Ribbon website address:

www.whiteribbon.org.au/stop-violence-against-women/take-the-oath

Pictured from left; Liam Dooley (White Ribbon Australia), Superintendent Darryl Johnson (Sunshine Coast Police), Mr Tyson Kettlewell (University of Sunshine Coast), Mr Alexander Taylor-Pitcher (White Ribbon Australia), Ms Jackie McGregor (Alex Surf Club)

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