As you may be aware, one of three inaugural grants was awarded to the Zonta House Refuge Association in November 2014. This $40,000 grant was for the innovative Positive Pathways to Safety for Women and the Community program.
Positive Pathways was established in July 2013 to help women who have experienced, or are at risk of, a crisis such as family and domestic violence, mental health issues and homelessness. The program partners with other community service organisations for a one-door approach, minimising barriers to assistance for those in need.
But what does all that mean in practical terms? More specifically, Positive Pathways used the $40,000 grant from 100 Women to:
- Deliver household items to 54 women, 1 man and 93 children as part of the ‘Starting Over Support’ service;
- Deliver 17 training workshops to enhance awareness, skills and resilience, with over 130 attendances including referrals from women’s refuges, state government and community organisations; and
- Develop a mentoring program, which will help women recover, and prepare and support them to re-enter the community.
Program outcomes as a result of the 100 Women grant have been measured and include:
- Women accessing physical and mental health support services and financial and legal advice
- Women moving from refuge accommodation into their own accommodation
- Women returning to employment
- Women returning to study
- An increase in resilience and coping skills
- A decrease in stress and anxiety.
Feedback from program participants has been very positive, with comments such as:
- From this experience, I have taken away a better future for myself and kids.
- I am very excited for a new way of life and finding myself.
- I have learnt I am ok, I am doing my best, life is a journey and I am on the right track.
- Thank you for your support, love and education.
Without donations, Positive Pathways would not be able to deliver much needed services to women and their families. Zonta House believes these services are making a real difference. Unfortunately, gaps continue to exist in perpetrator accountability, behaviour change and ensuring the continued safety of victims and survivors.
Perhaps you are now wondering if there is another way you can help. You can volunteer your time and skills to Zonta House in a number of ways, such as group gardening/clean-up days, donation sorting, fundraising and project work.
Please know that, whatever your contribution, Zonta House is grateful for your support.