What White Ribbon Means To ME
Domestic abuse is often referred to as a ‘gendered crime.’ This means that the vast majority of domestic abuse incidents are perpetrated by men against women.
I have worked as a Children’s Independent Domestic Violence Advisor at The Den for a little over two years now. In this time, I have had the privilege to work with a wide range of children who have both inspired me and taught me so many lessons. Unfortunately, there is one thing all these children have in common. They have experienced domestic abuse. As mentioned above, the majority of these children have experienced violence and abuse from men against women.
As a male worker, this provides its own challenges. Many of these children have only seen males in a negative light. Some even normalise the behaviours they have witnessed as they have no other examples to go off. Too often do we hear the term ‘would benefit from positive male role model.’ Although I relish the chance to be a positive role model for children and young people, it still devastates me. Some children and parents/ carers I work with are hesitant to work with a male worker and this is very understandable. This is because they may not have seen how compassionate, caring and understanding men can be.
The support I offer is after the abuse has happened. Damage has already been done. The White Ribbon campaign is here to put a stop to this abuse happening in the first place. It’s to stand up and pledge to say no to violence against women. To do this, men need to take the lead. We are the ones who can make a difference. This is what being an ambassador for White Ribbon means to me. Being at the forefront of a campaign designed to make change. Changing perceptions and understanding of what is acceptable and unacceptable.
NEVER COMMIT, EXCUSE OR REMAIN SILENT ABOUT MALE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN. This is what we can promise. We can be the difference. We can be that positive role model.
Please follow the link to the White Ribbon website to make the pledge and find out more information –https://www.whiteribbon.org.uk/promise
If you are experiencing Domestic Abuse and need support, please follow the links below. In an emergency, always call 999.
Domestic Abuse National helpline – 0808 2000 247
Chat live online at https://www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk/en/Chat-to-us-online
If the support is for a child or young person please contact The Den – 0300 32 32 100 (option 3)
Fylde Coast Women’s Aid – 01253 596699