Contributing to a Better World

Neighbour Day to reduce Loneliness

Relationships Australia has been the home of Neighbour Day since 2014. This year’s theme was loneliness and what neighbours can do to create connections.   We know that social isolation has a profound effect on health and wellbeing. Many people in our community simply do not have enough social connections and meaningful relationships in their life to sustain or nurture them, especially during difficult times.

Neighbour Day is held on the last Sunday in March; it is an opportunity for people to get to know their neighbours by putting on a community event or by simply greeting a neighbour during an evening/morning walk.

The neighbourday.org has lots of useful tips and ideas, or sign up for the newsletter, Verandah.

White Ribbon Reaccreditation

In March 2019 Relationships Australia South Australia (RASA) was reaccredited as a ‘White Ribbon Workplace’.  The accreditation recognises the work that RASA does across the organisation in all our services and in the sector on boards, committees and through workforce development to address all types of violence and abuse by men against women.

The achievement was celebrated at an event held at our Hindmarsh site with the then White Ribbon CEO Delia Donovan, the Hon Carolyn Power MP, Assistant Minister for Domestic and Family Violence Prevention and the Hon John Dawkins MLC, Premier’s Advocate for Suicide Prevention and many others.

Each year RASA participates in the White Ribbon March and various other activities.

VOW (Voice of Women)

VOW is a network of women from all backgrounds, lifestyles and experiences who come together, share their creativity and celebrate the spirit of freedom through connecting, learning and supporting each other. Overall, the women rated the event positively and were inspired by the speakers; they are looking forward to the next event. This program is a cross-service collaboration driven by PEACE Multicultural Services.

Voices of Women (VOW) held its inaugural event on 23 March 2018, when 310 women attended an International Women’s Day event representing 27 cultural groups. Participants heard powerful stories from ordinary women doing extraordinary things, shared a meal together, met new people, made new friends and danced the night away.

Events that Contribute to a Better World

NAIDOC Week 2018  

Each year Relationships Australia South Australia participates in NAIDOC Week with various activities.  Many of our offices in 2018 got involved in the Because of Her, We Can! campaign to celebrate the role Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women have played and continue to play in our community at all levels.  

We honoured the inspirational legacy of women such as Barangaroo, Truganini, Gladys Elphick, Fannie Cochrane-Smith, Evelyn Scott, Pearl Gibbs, Oodgeroo Noonuccal, Celuia Mapo Salee, Thancoupie, Justine Saunders, Gladys Nicholls, Flo Kennedy, Essie Coffey, Isabel Coe, Emily Kame Kngwarreye, Eleanor Harding, Mum Shirl, Ellie Gaffney and Gladys Tybingoompa.  

We also acknowledged many contemporary trailblazers such as Joyce Clague, Yalmay Yunupingu, Evonne Goolagong Cawley, Nova Peris, Carol Martin, Elizabeth Morgan, Barbara Shaw, Rose Richards, Vonda Malone, Margaret Valadian, Lowitja O’Donoghue, June Oscar, Pat O’Shane, Pat Anderson, Jill Milroy, Banduk Marika, Linda Burney and Rosalie Kunoth-Monks – to name but a few. 

National Apology to the Victims and Survivors of Institutional Child Sexual Abuse

On 22 October 2018, some of our Elm Place clients and staff went to Parliament House in Canberra to hear the Prime Minister Scott Morrison deliver the National Apology to the Victims and Survivors of Institutional Child Sexual Abuse. It was followed by an address from the Opposition Leader Bill Shorten.

In SA, the State Government has committed to taking strong actions to support people who have experienced abuse in the past and to better protect children in the future.

11th Anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generation

13 February 2019 marked the 11th anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations, when the then Prime Minister Kevin Rudd formally apologised on behalf of the Australian Government. RASA honoured the Stolen Generations and supported the 11th Anniversary of the National Apology through staff attendance at the Apology Breakfast held in the Convention Centre, Honouring the Stolen Generations event at Veale Gardens and the Walk of Awareness at Port Adelaide.

National Sorry Day in the North 2019

A public ceremony was held at the Stolen Generations Memorial and Healing Garden at Andrews Farm, with local schools in attendance, followed by an honour walk through John Hartley School. A lunch was held at the John McVeity Centre for members of the Stolen Generations and their families.

Event partners were Relationships Australia South Australia (RASA) Northern Region and Post Care Support Services, Department for Education, City of Playford, Playford Communities for Children, AnglicareSA, Uniting Communities, City of Salisbury, Family by Family, Circle of Hope, City of Port Adelaide Enfield and the Barbery – the Craft of a Barber Academy.

Comments for the event pledge book  

 This day will never be forgotten. Any prayer is that there will be many more days like this.

Thank you, such a privilege to be able to tell my story today.

Great Day! The stolen generation ceremony was emotional, but we need to keep recognising and not forget about the Stolen Generation Survivors.

Influencing Better Policy and Outcomes

Over the past year Relationships Australia South Australia contributed three submissions about gambling, to:

Productivity Commission Inquiry into Mental Health, April 2019

Independent Gambling Authority’s Community Consultation into Online Gambling, August 2018

SA Parliamentary Select Committee on Poverty in SA, August 2018

Australian Information Industry Association SA/NT iAwards

Recognition for the family DOORS app

The Family DOORS app has picked up a gong at the Australian Information Industry Association SA/NT iAwards. The merit award recognised the app’s work on improving family safety and wellbeing through a smooth, efficient and timesaving web interface. Watch the video and share in the winning experience!

Academic Partnerships

Working in partnership with world-leading academics at universities across the world

In accordance with our strategic goal, we see these partnerships as part of our commitment to contribute to a better world through presentations, publications and community development.

Our partnerships include:

  • Prof Jennifer McIntosh and colleagues at Deakin University. This partnership has enabled continuous improvement and adoption of best practice in a number of areas, most notably screening and responding to risk across our agency using DOORS. It has also significantly upskilled our staff in Child Inclusive Practice and attachment assessment with vulnerable families.  We have published and presented the work in many places including high impact factor journals and at international conferences.
  • Prof Amy Holtzworth-Munroe at Indiana University. This partnership has been crucial to communicating to staff ‘the reason why’ to actively screen for risks like domestic violence. It also has oriented us to the importance of evaluation and pragmatic trials of initiatives such as formal versus informal assessments.
  • Prof Nerilee Hing at Central Queensland University. This major research project explores the link between domestic violence and gambling, with the participation of a service provider such as RASA being essential to securing funding from ANROWS, Australia’s National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety. RASA’s contribution has been recruiting staff and clients as participants and training project staff.
  • Prof Sarah Wendt at Flinders University. This partnership has expanded our work in defining and supporting ‘healthy relationships’ in the context of domestic violence.

We have also enabled over 40 research studies over the last five years for other external bodies such as academic partners, research institutions and funders. We frequently receive request to access our clients and their information, and also our staff. All such hese projects must first pass robust external human research ethics clearance as well as our internal Project Risk Review processes before they can proceed.

Publications involving Relationships Australia South Australia staff – including those from the partnerships above – are shared at our website.

Snapshot of Publications and Presentations by our Staff

Stott, J. (2019, June) Removing barriers and building bridges to address adolescent violence in the family. Presentation at New York University, International Association of Social Work in Group Therapy annual symposium, New York, USA.

Ralfs, C. (2019, May). Screening, early interventions & coordinated support. Presentation at Sweden Parliamentary Seminar. Stockholm, Sweden.

Tully, D., Moss D, Alford D. & Palfrey N (2018, November). Child-Focused Practices for Working with Fathers Who Use Violence, International Domestic Violence and Health Conference 2018, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

Decrea, S. (2018, November) Leading from Behind. Reclaiming ‘Old Way’ for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Families. FRSA National Conference 2018, Cairns, QLD, Australia.

Salih, N. & Goodbourn, E. (2018, November) Downloading the Skills for Independence, Co-designing a new web resource for young care leavers becoming independent, Presentation at FRSA National Conference 2018, Cairns, QLD, Australia.

Stott, J. (2018, November) Integrated Model to address Elder Abuse, Presentation and paper at FRSA National Conference 2018, Cairns, QLD, Australia.

Lockwood, D. (2018, August) Meeting core mental health needs using a hands-on approach to neurodevelopment: Use of the First Touch Program with Infants to level-out mental health risk factors. The MHS EBook 2018, The 2018 Book of Proceedings, 2019 Australia.

Williams, E.  (2018, August). Supporting Prisoners living with a Blood Borne Virus. Paper presented at the 11th Australasian Viral Hepatitis Conference 2018, Adelaide, SA, Australia.

For the full list of presentations and publications, please visit https://www.rasa.org.au/resources/publications_papers/