Whittlesea CALD Communities Family Violence Research Report 2012 - Page 31

30 Whilst most of the women felt extremely comfortable discussing their experience of family violence within the Arabic speaking women’s group, some women said that they felt more comfortable disclosing their experiences to people outside of their own cultural group because they wanted to maintain anonymity. Improvements to Services The women were asked to reflect on their experiences and suggest ways in which access to support services might be improved. The women were keen to share their experience to assist other CALD women experiencing family violence. The suggestions that were made for ways in which support services and access for CALD women might be improved were largely a reflection of the barriers that were been identified through the consultations: ? ? ? ? ? ? ? More information about Australian laws, family violence and women’s rights to be provided to women on arrival in Australia; Information also to be provided to men on arrival in Australia to address attitudes and behaviours; Making printed information available in Arabic and other languages as well as targeting women through community forums was suggested as a potentially effective way of reaching CALD women; More information and education for CALD communities about service providers and what they do to address ignorance and mistrust; Greater access to legal support; Continuing opportunities to engage in groups such as the Arabic speaking women’s group; More opportunities for women to engage in social and other activities outside the home. Consultations with Young People The aim of the consultations with young people was not to determine whether the young people in this particular group had experienced family violence but to take a sample group of young people from a CALD background and gauge their level of understanding and awareness of family violence, their level of understanding of what constitutes a ‘respectful relationship’ and their level of awareness of support and services available in the Whittlesea LGA. Demographic Information All of the young people who participated in the group consultation were from Sudanese backgrounds, had been born overseas and had been in Australia for 4-6 years. All of the young people and their families had migrated to Australia on refugee visas. The young people were aged 14-17 years with the girls slightly younger at age 14 and the boys aged 15-17. The young people who agreed to take part in the consultation were all attending secondary school and were already engaged with the Homework Club run by Whittlesea Community Connections.