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Anti-domestic violence forum to feature women leaders

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anti-domestic violence forum

Women leading national organisations and those behind successful South Australian start-ups will headline Zahra Foundation Australia’s first anti-domestic violence forum, dubbed as the “Women Empowering Women luncheon.

South Australian of the Year and first indigenous executive appointed by the AFL, Tanya Hosch, will join Meals on Wheels Australia executive director Kate Thiele and Edible Blooms founder Kelly Jamieson for this special event on Friday, May 7.

The trio will share their experiences and advice for other women in business during a panel discussion facilitated by The Advertiser journalist and Foundation board member Lauren Novak.

Hosch said being part of Zahra Foundation’s event allowed her to use her experience in sport to “make a contribution and support raising funds for women, allowing them to find a safer future away from domestic violence”.

Every ticket sold will help women who have escaped abusive relationships to find financial security, through a unique pay-it-forward approach.

Ticket sales for every two tables of eight will cover the cost of one woman to complete Zahra Foundation’s nine-week Pathways to Empowerment program and receive one-on-one financial counselling. This specialised support ensures they can break the cycle of abuse and go on to further study, employment or even start their own business.

“The pay-it-forward idea is fantastic,” said Thiele. “We know that gender inequity is the main driver of domestic violence and I loved the idea of bringing women together to support other, more vulnerable women.”

Meanwhile, Jamieson said: “It’s challenging as a woman in business not to get sidelined to look after kids, not to give up when we’re paid less or treated unfairly, but if we all stick together we can really make a difference for future gender equity. That is why I am so passionate about this event.”

Zahra Foundation was established by the children of Zahra Abrahimzadeh, who was killed by her estranged husband at the Adelaide Convention Centre in 2010.

Demand for its anti-domestic violence services has soared amid the pressures of the COVID-19 pandemic but current funding levels mean the Foundation is only able to help a quarter of the women who apply.

The inaugural Women Empowering Women luncheon is supported by Zonte’s Footstep, Pirate Life Brewing and The Highway Hotel.

Numbers are limited and organisers will follow a COVID-safe plan for the event.

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