On Tuesday, August 14, Year 9 and 10 Victor Harbor High School male students from the AFL Football Academy were invited to an event at the Port Adelaide Football Club where the issue of domestic violence and respectful relationships with women was discussed.
Students involved were Dylan Kleinig, Oakley Johnson, Cameron Christinger, Brayden Miller, James Kleinig, Cooper Halls and Jaid Cooper and they had the support of teachers Paul Loughhead, Stefan Malinowski and Andy Coulter.
It is the third year the Victor Harbor High School has been involved in the program.
The Power to End Violence Against Women (PEVAW) program has been developed to raise awareness around the issue of violence against women and promote respectful relationships to young men in Year 10 across schools in South Australia.
The program provides the information and skills necessary for young men to make informed choices to prevent violent behaviours in society.
More than 3000 male school students have participated in the program since it began in 2016, learning about respect, trust, gender equality, healthy relationships and the dangers of abusive behaviour.
Under the PEVAW program, ambassadors Travis Boak, Ollie Wines, Hamish Hartlett and Jasper Pittard visit schools with club legend Russel Ebert and Youth Programs Manager Jake Battifuoco, to educate young men about how to make informed choices to prevent violent behaviours.
Paul Loughhead said the program was focused on becoming an active bystander and is designed to develop a student’s knowledge, understanding, skills and confidence to have a safe and effective conversation with someone and/or group of people when they see or hear them engaging in behaviours that are directly and/or indirectly disrespectful to women.
“It is a very successful program and at Victor Harbor High School we aim to raise the awareness of domestic violence and the respecting of women. Ken Hinkley and Travis Boak spoke about respectful relationships with influential women in their lives and Paddy Ryder and Immanuel Irra took us on a tour of the inner sanctum of the Port Power Football Club. The highlight no doubt was the moving story from White Ribbon ambassador, Ivan Phillips, who shared his experience of losing his daughter to domestic violence,” Paul said.
“Not sure if there is scope to increase our participation in the future – but we see a real need for this in a rural area.”.
Jake Battifuoco said the club appreciated the school taking the time to travel to the club and supporting the event.
“I hope all had an enjoyable time and got a lot out of it. I think they did. To have schools such as Victor Harbor High School involved in the program shows them taking an active lead in empowering young men to drive change in the community,” Jake said.
“We are very keen to increase the schools participation next year and I am planning for 2019 to discuss some potential options.”