Minister visits gallery raising awareness

Councillor Jeff Springfield, White Ribbon Casey Cardinia president and founder April Whitelaw, Pakenham MP Emma Vulin and State Minister for Prevention Family Violence, Vicki Ward. Picture: Supplied

State Minister for Prevention Family Violence Vicki Ward visited the White Ribbon Gallery exhibition to discover how a local art exhibition at the Cardinia Cultural Centre is helping to start conversations about family violence and promote healthy relationships.

Ms Ward was joined by Pakenham MP Emma Vulin and Cardinia Shire Councillor Jeff Springfield at the exhibition, and met with organiser and White Ribbon Group Leader April Whitelaw.

The exhibition was originally created as an online exhibition in 2020, during the coronavirus pandemic, to raise awareness at a time when people weren’t able to participate face to face in annual events.

“Everyone has a role to play in preventing family violence and I applaud and congratulate the exhibition committee for their efforts to raise awareness through the arts and to create conversations about how we can all promote respectful relationships,” Ms Ward said.

“I encourage people to visit the gallery and or to participate in their community events as part of 16 days of activism.”

The 2023 exhibition theme is “Lifting the veil on domestic violence” and aims to raise awareness about domestic and family violence through the artworks and to and engage the community in conversations, which promote healthy relationships within the home.

“The artworks are inspiring and really open the conversation about preventing family violence in our community,” Ms Vulin said.

The gallery is open daily from 10am-3pm and the exhibition will run from 14 – 24 November 2023.

The exhibition is being held in the lead up to the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence, a global campaign which runs from 25 November until 10 December.

This year’s campaign encourages all Victorians to work together to prevent violence against women.

The Victorian Government is committed to continuing to work to end family violence and has invested more than $3.8 billion since the Royal Commission into Family Violence.