Do you know anyone who has been affected by family violence? Have you experienced it yourself? Do you know what to do in a situation like that if you come across it? The first step is to be able to talk about it. And that’s what Nelson’s Community Champions are here for.

Working with Safe Families Nelson Richmond, the champions are a group of people in our community trained to have the skills and information to successfully manage conversations around family violence or managing anger. “We hope that this will contribute to reducing family violence in our community and also promoting ‘it is ok to ask for help,” says coordinator Haidee Channings.

“If someone comes and speaks to you, that is a very brave step – to be talking to someone.”

Social worker and a community champion Sarah Lim started with the group in July and she is available to talk to anyone who contacts her. “You have to be non-judgemental, patient and open,” she says. “Allowing them to tell you their story and what they’ve been through. Listening to what they have to say and gauging from your experience know how to help them.”

Posters showing photos of all community champions will be put up in Richmond and Nelson in November so that the community can identify them. You can get more information from Haidee at Te Korowai Trust, 398 Main Road Stoke or by the phone: 03 547 5958 Ext 716.

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