Hundreds of White Ribbon events occur around the nation on November 25. Some were held on a large scale, while others were an intimate gathering as people touched by violence drew together for support. At HMAS Cerberus, sailors, soldiers, airmen and airwomen took to the streets of Hastings to march alongside Police, Fire Fighters, SES, Ambulance, community groups and primary school students, to show their support for White Ribbon Day.
Senior Sergeant Michael Lamb of the Hastings Police worked with Councillor David Garnock, who is also a member of the local Respectful Relationships Working Group, to coordinate the march and garner commitment from the community to stand against family violence and violence against women. The march claimed the attention of shop owners and patrons, with many joining the procession to lend their voice to the cause.
Seaman Star Nathan Smith said he felt privileged to take part in the event and was proud to be asked to march with the banner procession, leading the way.
"This is my first White Ribbon day as a member of the Royal Australian Navy. Today is important to me because it shows Navy's support to this cause and Cerberus' support to our community," Seaman Star Smith said.
"Violence against women and children is a community concern and it needs a community to stand up and prevent it."
Later in the afternoon, more than 500 Cerberus men and women gathered on the parade ground to listen to Petty Officer Steven Brown talk about the importance of the White Ribbon cause, as he works towards becoming a White Ribbon Ambassador.
As many as 1 in 3 women experience family violence and 1 in 4 children will witness it in their own homes. The White Ribbon organisation works to prevent male violence against women through raising funds and awareness.