Women and men from the remote NT community of Lajamanu rallied for their second annual International Women’s Day march, held on Tuesday.
The Women’s Day march has sought to highlight the impact of family violence on women and children in Australia and around the world.
Margaret Johnson is 19 years old and works at the Lajamanu Learning Centre. Johnson is daughter to Robyn Lawson a community leader. Johnson said the IWD March is all about community standing together.
“This march will give strong and positive minds into those women that have violent relationships, knowing those people who are marching are strong and standing with them,” Ms Johnson said.
These views were echoed by Ezekiel ‘Ziggy’ Jurrah. Ziggy is the 17-year-old grandson of Lynette Tasman, also a community leader.
“The march showed me how to treat ladies - my mother, aunty, sister and all girls. When I get older I want to be a good husband,” Ziggy said.
The theme this year was ‘Better the balance, better the world.’ The IWD march couldn’t be held on the usual March 8 date due to other community commitments.
Event organisers which included; Lajamanu Community leaders and service providers thought that it was better to hold the event late than not at all. One of the strengths of this march is that community members and local services are working together to make it happen.
World Vision Australia is one of these groups that work with the Lajamanu community to raise awareness and change attitudes about family violence.
“International Women’s Day isn’t about one day. It’s about all days. Women’s rights don’t expire at midnight,” said Liz Mullen, a World Vision spokesperson.
Andrew Johnson, a community leader said that it’s tragic for families to see women leave and never return. “This march will help them (community) see violence isn’t OK,” Mr Johnson said.
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