Local kahukura (champions) who take a stand against family violence were celebrated at the E Tu Whanau & White Ribbon Community day.
Co-ordinated by Safer Families Rotorua, the recent event at the Village Green saw many organisations taking part. They included Running To Stop It, White Ribbon Ride, Te Hahi, Zonta Club of Rotorua, Te Arawa iwi, local rangatahi talent, Rotorua Police and the Police dog section.
“These kahukura dedicate their lives in some way to the people of Rotorua, whether that is by keeping us safe, raising awareness about creating safe, loving and caring whanau – free from violence – and also messages that inspire and encourage young people to dream big,” Rotorua Safer Families co-ordinator, Kiti Ransfield-King says.
“The day is about acknowledging our local kahukura while educating and engaging with our community at the same time.”
It was also about promoting messages that aligned with E Tu Whanau and White Ribbon.
Family violence is a significant issue in our community that cuts across gender, cultures, ethnicities and socio-economic levels. It is an issue that affects us as a community and requires us all to take action,” Kiti says.
“Increasingly there are more stories throughout Rotorua of whānau facing challenges head on and looking within community for inspiration. The point of raising awareness is that when messages reach whānau, they resonate and they engage a wide range of people and communities.
“Strengthening our reach into communities, including those deemed “hard to reach” is a priority for both these kaupapa and that’s what community days like this are for. The outcome of days like this are a result of listening to what is important to community and encourages them to be a part of events like this.”