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Develop training packages for faith leaders and communities


Who is leading the change

  • Department of Premier and Cabinet

The Office of Multicultural Affairs and Citizenship Multifaith Advisory Group and the Victorian Multicultural Commission, in partnership with expert family violence practitioners, develop training packages on family violence and sexual assault for faith leaders and communities. These packages should build on existing work, reflect leading practice in responding to family violence, and include information about referral pathways for victims and perpetrators. The training should be suitable for inclusion as part of the pre-service learning in various faith training institutes, as well as the ongoing professional development of faith leaders.

  • The Victorian Government is funding training packages for faith leaders and communities to strengthen their capacity and capability to prevent and respond to family violence. This training is informed by the evidence base of what works best to assist faith leaders and communities to prevent and respond to family violence.

    This work is connected to the implementation of Royal Commission Recommendation 165.

  • In 2019, the Victorian Government funded the design and delivery of five pilot projects from July 2019 to June 2021 by the Anglican Diocese of MelbourneExternal Link , the Buddhist Council of VictoriaExternal Link , the Faith Communities Council of VictoriaExternal Link , the Uniting Church (Synod of Victoria and Tasmania)External Link and the Victorian Sikh Gurduaras CouncilExternal Link .

    The projects focused on building the capacity of faith leaders and communities, from the Anglican, Buddhist, Hindu, Sikh and Uniting communities throughout Victoria. This included the development of training manuals and sessions, the creation of online and print resources (in various languages), the formation of steering committees and advisory groups, and partnerships with specialist prevention organisations.

    The pilot projects were informed by a Technical Paper (July 2019) and an Evidence Guide (February 2020), which were produced by the University of Melbourne and the Multicultural Centre for Women’s Health, in partnership with a Multifaith Advisory Group Family Violence Working GroupExternal Link (established in August 2016 with representation from peak faith bodies, Our WatchExternal Link and inTouch Multicultural Centre Against Family ViolenceExternal Link ).

    The Technical Paper and the Evidence Guide outline the best and most promising practices for strengthening the capacity of faith leaders, based on a scan of the international, national, and Victorian literature, and consultations held with key stakeholders.

    The Victorian Government also funded the Board of Imams Victoria (BOIV)External Link from 2018 – 2020 to deliver the Family Violence Project. Through a series of workshops, awareness raising activities and the establishment of referral pathways, the project supported the BOIV, Victorian Imams and Muslim community leaders to better support people experiencing family violence, at risk of experience family violence or using family violence. Consistent with Free from violence: Victoria’s strategy to prevent family violence and the Everybody Matters: Inclusion and Equity Statement ten-year vision, the Victorian Government will continue to support faith leaders and communities to prevent and respond to family violence and continue to build the evidence of successful prevention work in faith communities. For example, the Victorian Government committed over $2 million in 2020 to support multicultural and faith-based organisations to support people experiencing family violence during the COVID-19 pandemic, and allocated $9.67 million over four years in the 2020/21 State Budget to support multicultural and faith communities to prevent family violence.

  • Implemented.

Reviewed 11 October 2021

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