S3: Responding to Domestic and Family Violence

Time: 11:00am – 11:50am
Location: Chapman Room
Farah Assafiri, Manager, South West Sydney Women’s Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Services

3.1 Trust in Action: Domestic and Family Violence, COVID19 and Best Practice approaches to supporting Multicultural Communities 

Nemat Kharboutli
Muslim Women Australia 

About the presentation

In this presentation we share the pressure points for Multicultural communities and the complexity and intersections of their experiences, particularly throughout the COVID19 environment. We will talk through key learnings in centring service delivery from a health and safety perspective, for families at risk of homelessness as well as victim-survivors, inclusive of children and young people; MWA will address the need for multi-tiered strategies for service delivery, communication and advocacy in engaging and supporting multicultural communities within a strength-based, intersectional, human rights framework. The language of trust and empowerment emerge as critical factors in effective, responsive engagement.

About the presenter

Nemat Kharboutli is the Linking Hearts Multicultural Family Violence and Homelessness Service Manager at Muslim Women Australia. Nemat works collaboratively across the women's sector to advocate for a sexual, domestic and family violence free and inclusive Australia. Her key areas of interest are the gendered nature of violence and Islamophobia. As part of her work at MWA, Nemat hopes to contribute to policy reform that enhances culturally, linguistically and religiously appropriate service provision to facilitate women's agency and greater accessibility of support to women.

3.2 Building Stronger Families: Addressing Men's Behaviour Change in Culture and Language Surpreet Cheema, Relationships Australia NSW 

Supreet Cheema 
Relationships Australia 

About the presentation

Building stronger families (BSF) Program is a culturally adapted in language, whole o family approach to Men’s Behaviour Change (MBC) resulting from the partnership between Settlement Services International and Relationships Australia NSW.  BSF aims to increase safety regarding family violence in the lives of families in different cultural groups, with specific adaptions according to community needs and understandings. RSNSW conducted a participatory process evaluation of BSF to integrate reflection and feedback from program staff into program implementation. Qualitative interviews were conducted with stakeholders along with the Most Significant Change Technique. This adaption of MSC has collected stories of change through lived experience of workers and stakeholders in this project and has been used in feedback processes to enhance the continuous improvement of the program. This presentation will share insights from the evaluation. 

About the presenter

Surpreet works as a Research Officer as part of the Research and Impact Team at Relationships Australia NSW. Surpreet is also a psychologist and has worked in diverse mental health settings over a span of 20 years. She is currently in private practice. She has extensive experience in working with people from migrant refugee backgrounds and has keen interest in family violence and trauma.

3.3 Rich Cultures Should Have Rich Relationships – Community led Domestic Violence Prevention

Dipti Zachariah & Monika Latanik
Western Sydney Local Health District

About the presentation 

A partnership model between Multicultural Health Services Western Sydney Local Health District, the Punjabi (Harman Foundation) and Sudanese (Nuba Mountains group, Spiritual Revaluation Centre) communities.  A participatory action research approach was used where the community is an equal partner. Positive outcomes for families, women and their children achieved by co-designing culturally appropriate resources that can help reduce violence against women and their children in Sudanese and Punjabi communities living in Western Sydney Healthy Relationships. 

About the presenters

Dipti Zachariah is the Statewide Specialist programs Health Team) at Western Sydney Local Health district Multicultural Health Services (Integrated and Community Health directorate) she leads a portfolio that includes the NSW Education Program on FGM/C, womens health, domestic violence prevention programs, maternal health, the Bilingual Community Education Program and CALD Youth programs. Dipti is part of the Sydney Health Literacy Lab ( University of Sydney). Her passion is to work with culturally linguistically diverse communities as equal partners and empower them for better health outcomes and jointly influence service quality.    

Monika Latanik is the Manager of Multicultural Health Services, Western Sydney Local Health District. She has over 20 years of experience working in NSW Health agencies on projects related to access, equity and improving health outcomes for culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities with the expertise in the areas of public health, health promotion and education.

3.4 CALD Domestic Violence project. Evaluating the impact of culturally informed case management for client’s outcomes during Covid -19 pandemic

Clement Meru & Sonia Kalsi
SydWest Multicultural Services

About the presentation

SydWest Multicultural Service observed increasing Domestic family violence disclosure since the  COVID-19 pandemic intensified in Australia in March 2020, and this was attributed according to victims to financial pressures, social isolation, and the increased presence of extended family members in households. To address this issue and evaluate its Domestic Violence project, SydWest undertook an evaluation of its Specialist Migrant Domestic Violence service by Central Queensland University. Enhanced case management services were offered to the clients like- services for emotional support and positive social interactions, services to facilitate greater autonomy through increased knowledge of rights, services and options, Services to facilitate safety awareness and support. After using the services, women felt empowered, had a greater sense of autonomy, increased their knowledge of their rights and of community and government services available to them, progressed in legal and administrative processes important to reducing violence, and identified and established strategies to reduce risk of further violence.

About the presenters

Clement has over 13 years’ experience in governance ranging from small and medium sized, incorporated organisations to peak bodies, including Settlement Service International. Clement currently serves on several local forums and government advisory committees in New South Wales: he is convenor for the Blacktown Local Government Area Multicultural Interagency (BMI) and currently serves on the NSW Police Multicultural Advisory Council (PMAC), Blacktown City Council’s Multicultural Advisory Committee and the Joint Partnership Working Group for Refugee Settlement in NSW.

Sonia Kalsi is the Team leader with Women’s and Families, part of the Community Engagement Division at SydWest Multicultural Services. She is responsible to deliver a range of programs that provide services to CALD families, including Domestic Violence Prevention program, Health and Targeted Early Intervention programs. Through the various Women Support groups she ensures that the new and emerging communities are to settle smoothly, introducing them to law of the land, their right and responsibilities, healthy living, communication etiquette and confidence building.

Last updated:

12 Oct 2022

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