22 April 2018

Mirjana Wilson on breaking the cycle of domestic violence and how you can help

| Nina Gbor
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Mirjana Wilson is a force to be reckoned with in the ACT community. Nominated for the 2017 Australian of the Year Award (ACT) and winner of the 2016 ACT Violence Prevention Woman of the Year, Mirjana is the CEO of the Domestic Violence Crisis Service (DVCS). This year the DVCS acknowledges 30 years of serving the ACT community with the 30th Anniversary Fundraising Gala Ball on May 19th.

As a passionate advocate for social justice and inclusion, Mirjana has spent 25 years working in both government and community sectors. Mirjana has been with the DVCS for 14 years and says that DVCS is more than just a crisis delivery organisation because the entire family affected by domestic and family violence can access support. DVCS provides support to members of the ACT community who have experienced intimate partner, domestic and family violence and those who have engaged in it and want to stop. In the last decade alone (2008-2018) DVCS has provided support to over 32,000 Canberrans and their families.

Mirjana feels that the holistic and unique ‘360-degree’ level of support they provide goes a long way in helping people get their lives back on track; having said that, she also believes that the highly qualified and committed staff are one of the organisation’s best assets. Equipped with a diverse skill set, they also represent the diversity of the people DVCS works with, which is very important for engaging with people in crisis, vulnerable persons and those whose safety has been compromised. A service user responded to the DVCS support she received with the following feedback:

I’m not sure what I would have done without your support during a very tough time in my life. I’ve not come across such a fantastic service as DVCS. You have provided direct and understanding support when I was embarrassed and shamed by my own community.

Asked about her hopes for seeing the DVCS landscape change over the next year, Mirjana says “I am committed to maintaining momentum on the issue of domestic/family violence – ensuring that we not only engage the community but keep governments accountable for their responsibilities in providing adequate and ongoing resources for funding and supporting the entire spectrum – from primary prevention to crisis intervention to longer-term support for families. I also want the private and corporate sector to continue to engage in this issue – not purely as philanthropic donors, but seeing how their businesses and companies can make the lives of women who invariably work for them or purchase services from them, better.”

Mirjana wants people to realise that we can ALL take action when it comes to this issue– on behalf of individuals, families and communities. She feels privileged to be invited into the lives of people who are vulnerable and in crisis, with the level of trust they have in her and her team, to give the right support options and information that will enable them to make the best decisions for their safety and the safety of their children.

The DVCS 30th Anniversary Gala Ball is on this May at Hotel Realm.

The DVCS 30th Anniversary Gala Ball is on this May at Hotel Realm.

30 years of this level of community service is worth celebrating, which is why the DVCS Board and staff are inviting the public to join in the celebration of the 2018 30th Anniversary Gala Ball on Saturday 19 May 2018, from 6:30 pm at Hotel Realm. For more information and to book tickets, click here.

To donate and support DVCS, go here.

Website: www.dvcs.org.au.

Facebook: @DVCSACT

Instagram: @dvcsact

Twitter: @DVCSACT

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