Codes 4 Life: Women Hosts First Workshop
Nov 25, 2020
Twenty-five women gathered at the Desert Knowledge Precinct yesterday to discuss and develop prevention practices against domestic, family and sexual violence (DFSV).
The first Codes 4 Life: Women workshop was delivered by a dedicated team including Facilitators Jessie Bartlett, Sharon Burns and Marissa Gibson; and Elders Maureen Abbott, Alice Nelson and Kathleen Wallace. The workshop hosted 14 participants and four guest speakers, and was supported by DKA Program Manager Nina Kolder and Communications Officer Tracy Jones.
Codes 4 Life: Women is a pilot program by DKA, funded under Territory Families’ ‘Safe, Respected and Free from Violence’ Prevention Grant. The co-designed program model builds on the framework and strong cultural focus of DKA’s existing flagship project, Codes 4 Life. It seeks to address the high rates of DFSV in the Northern Territory, and develop prevention practices including building awareness and self-determination.
The workshop’s theme drew inspiration from Aboriginal culture and identity: land, language, people, ceremony, and law.
The inaugural workshop drew on themes relating to Aboriginal culture and identity: land, language, people, ceremony, and law; and invited participants to engage in interactive workshop activities including mapping the different elements of culture and identity.
The workshop provided a space for women of all ages to share their knowledge and understanding about factors surrounding DFSV. It covered topics relating to the different types of abuse, control, use of alcohol and other substances in communities, loss of culture, sexualisation of women, and peer pressure. A significant theme from the workshop, particularly among younger participants, highlighted the use and implications of social media in school-aged children.
Guest speakers from Women’s Safety Services of Central Australia (WoSSCA) and the Northern Territory Police talked about the services available to women who feel unsafe, or have experienced or witnessed DFSV.
WoSSCA’s Maxine Ballard details the range of Central Australian services available to women who feel unsafe.
Remote Team Leader Maxine Ballard presented an overview of WoSSCA services and protective measures available to women who feel threatened. Ballard also detailed a range of help available from likeminded partner organisations.
The Northern Territory Police’s Criminal Investigation Branch operations and DFSV response were detailed by Detective Acting Senior Sergeant Carmen Butcher, Senior Aboriginal Community Police Officer Francine “Frankie” Elsegood, and Aboriginal Liaison Officer Christine Woods. They discussed language services, confidentiality, consent, mandatory reporting, culturally appropriate systems, and protecting oneself from online crimes including catfishing.
Response to the workshop was collectively positive, with participants actively engaging with presentations and activities throughout its duration. Feedback highlighted an increased knowledge about culture, identity and DFSV services, as well as an increased likelihood to report or seek help for DFSV-related incidents.