For the second year ‘BeSafe’, Bolton’s Community Safety Partnership, is taking part in the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence.
The international campaign – 25 November to 10 December – supports action against all forms of violence against women.
Bolton’s young people and civic and community leaders will raise their hands to kick-start the campaign.
They will place their brightly coloured painted hand prints on the large cream ‘These hands are not for hurting’ banners in Bolton Central Library, 11am to noon on Friday 25 November.
The display, on show from November 25 for 16 days, will also feature a board of thought-provoking messages from women who have suffered domestic abuse.
Other activities taking place around Bolton include: group sessions to help build victims’ confidence, self-esteem and assertiveness; domestic abuse poster competition for school children aged eight to 17; advice and information sessions with Bolton at Homes’ specialist domestic violence housing officers; and amateur dramatics performance, poetry and craft sessions.
Domestic abuse includes physical violence, psychological, sexual, financial and emotional abuse involving partners, ex-partners, other relatives or household members.
One in four women experience domestic abuse at some time in their lives and thousands of children are affected by witnessing or experiencing abuse in their homes.
The most harmful abuse is carried out by men against women partners, but abuse can also be carried out by women against men, within same sex relationships and by family members.
People experience domestic violence regardless of their social group, class, age, race, disability, sexuality or lifestyle. Abuse can begin at any time after a relationship has ceased.
Domestic abuse can have a significant impact upon families. Their health and overall well-being can be adversely affected by living in a household where there is any form of domestic abuse.
Local councillors, civic leaders, staff and young people will be wearing white ribbons to show their opposition to violence against women.
Councillor Elaine Sherrington, Bolton Council’s Executive Member for Cleaner, Greener, Safer said:
“This campaign recognises the struggle victims face in leaving an abusive relationship and aims to raise awareness that there is help available.
“We operate a very successful multi-agency approach to providing support to both male and female victims of domestic violence.
“We also provide a range of outreach and follow-on support schemes to victims or potential victims.”
Superintendent Paul Rumney said:
“We want to encourage victims and their families and also those people who commit abuse to come forward and seek help and advice. By coming forward people can end the suffering and get the support they need to start re-building their lives.”
For advice about dealing with domestic abuse, speak confidentially to a specially trained officer on 0161 872 5050.