22nd of August, 2018

In Victoria the reported number of family violence incidents are increasing. Between 2014-15 and 2015-16, the number of family violence incidents reported in Victoria’s Northern Metropolitan Region increased from 11,586 to 12,149. The City of Hume and the City of Whittlesea experienced the highest rate of reported family violence (Crime Statistics Agency, 2015). This violence is a significant health and safety issue requiring a multi-faceted response.

In partnership with Whittlesea Community Connections (WCC), DPV Health presented a Respectful Relationships training program for young people aged 16-25. The aim of this program was to train and support young people to develop the confidence and skills to influence change within their community around gender equality and gender-based violence. This pilot program informed the development, delivery and evaluation of  Media with a Difference.

Camera rolls on Media with a Difference program

Two workshop participants setting up the camera
Two workshop participants

Media with a Difference engaged young people in developing their understanding of the nature and prevalence of violence, the drivers of violence against women, actions that can be taken to prevent violence against women, and bystander action. A videographer worked with participants, developing their video skills, showing them how media could be used as a tool to prevent violence against women. Participants utilised their newly found skills to produce a video. This video is being used by participants to share a message of gender equality, to challenge harmful gender roles and social norms, and counter violence-supportive attitudes among young people in the City of Whittlesea.

“I learnt about the different forms of violence… before this session I wasn’t aware of emotional, social, spiritual or financial violence”

The program was successful in increasing participant’s knowledge of  gender-based violence and steps that can be taken to prevent it. Participants also gained a deeper understanding of camera and sound equipment and used this knowledge to produce a video to promote gender equality and prevent violence against women. As a result of participating in the program, participants expressed that they had more of an ability to identify attitudes and behaviours that sustain gender-based violence and how to be an active bystander. They also explained that they were confident in their ability to share this information with friends and family.

Media with a difference was co-designed and co-facilitated by DPV Health and WCC and funded through the City of Whittlesea’s Community Development Grants and the Equity Health and Wellbeing Project.