Air Your Dirty Laundry
1 May 2012
Urangan Point State School Principal Damien Gainsford is supporting a major Hervey Bay event to promote Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month in May.
“Domestic and Family Violence is an age-old problem and needs to be addressed on an on-going basis.
“We regularly see the results and effects of domestic and family violence in the school classroom and fortunately we have both the qualified professionals and the tools to work through the fallout with our students for the best possible outcomes.”
The Hervey Bay event to promote DFVP Month, Act as 1 Air Your Dirty Laundry, will focus on a unique art display involving community members of all ages.
The Hervey Bay event is called Act as 1, Air Your Dirty Laundry and is an initiative of the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services working with the Fraser Coast Regional Council, local police, the Yoorana Women's Domestic Violence & Resource Service and community organisations to promote public awareness during the month.
On May 31 a unique art show of themed articles of clothing painted and decorated by community members will be displayed at the Hervey Bay Community Centre in Pialba. The artworks will then go on a regional tour.
Mr Gainsford will be a key speaker at the Community Centre event and he plans to deliver a strong message that there are major alternatives to violence, especially when disciplining children.
“You should never hit a child out of frustration. In the home environment if your child is out of control, you must be certain that you are in control before you decide to smack them if that is your choice of discipline in extreme situations.
“Children are remarkable creatures and can teach us so much. It is imperative we don’t react too quickly. You can respond to their needs in a proactive way by distracting them or refocussing them.
“You certainly don’t need a cane to do that. I was never a supporter of corporal punishment even when the education system allowed it.”
Damien Gainsford said he had learned a lot about family violence as a child and even though he had survived that personal situation, his own five children now found themselves growing up without a paternal grandparent.
“I was sent to boarding school when my parents separated and that helped me readjust and realign my life’s journey but the sadness stays with me today.”
An educator over 17 years, Mr Gainsford describes domestic and family violence as “a community problem”.
“Domestic and family violence is not a private matter. It’s everyone’s business as a neighbour, a friend or a family member,” he said.
“Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month is an opportune time to bring this serious and complex issue out from behind closed doors.
“Research shows that eight out of 10 of people agree that they would intervene to support people affected by domestic violence, but they would like more information on the best way to respond.”
If you or your organisation would like to submit artwork please send it to the Community Centre on the corner of Charles Street and Torquay Road.
Artworks need to be in by Friday, May 25.
Artists, who prefer not to see their works taken on tour, can retrieve them from the centre after May 31.