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Baden-Clay sister to host Newy High Tea

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Vanessa Fowler will once again be lending her voice to domestic violence prevention, speaking at the Friends With Dignity High Tea in Newcastle this month.

Ms Fowler is Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Allison Baden-Clay Foundation and Allison’s sister. She is also a wife, daughter, mother of two boys and aunt to three beautiful young girls who tragically lost their mother nine years ago.

Little did she Fowler know that in 2012 her life would take such a drastic turn in horrific circumstances, and that her family would need her support more than ever. She and her family were thrust into public attention following the murder of Allison at the hands of her husband, and they have turned a tragic situation into a positive example of making a difference in the community.

Ms Fowler is now on a journey to educate and raise awareness of domestic and family abuse, and in particular coercive control.

Friends With Dignity, recognised as the Australian Charity of the Year 2018, is a volunteer-driven not-for-profit registered charity providing practical programs to assist survivors of domestic and family violence in collaboration with refuges and crisis centres.

Their dedicated and passionate team of volunteers are committed to making a difference within the Australian community, and changing the lives of the men, women and children whom they assist.

All of their programs are gifted unconditionally, without charging the survivors they assist, nor the refuges and crisis centres who refer their clients to the organisation.

Their charity events, such as High Tea With Friends, rely enormously on powerful voices such as Vanessa Fowler and former ambassador, Rosie Batty in this time of recovery to support the community where it is most needed.

“I’ve always looked at ways to help with fundraising across Australia for those who are assisting victims in crisis,” said Ms Batty.

This year’s High Tea With Friends events, which are in support of National Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month, will raise much needed funds for the FriendSafe program.

The FriendSafe program offers a device that has the ability to call emergency services with the push of a button.

“The device will alert anyone identified in the individual’s Safety Plan, and if necessary, directly dial emergency services at any time of the day or night, 365 days a year,” said Friends With Dignity National FriendSafe Program Manager, Melissa van der Burgt.

The FriendSafe program has several options available, one being the Sponsorship option which will cover the full cost of the device, including a 12-month monitoring subscription, for those referred by registered agencies, services or organisations, to be used in conjunction with their safety management plan.

“The FriendSafe program is an initiative established to ensure everyone is able to practice a basic need of feeling safe and access to an immediate response when feeling threatened or at risk,” said Ms van der Burgt.

“Violence doesn’t always end when the survivor takes the steps to leave, we see the devastating impacts of this in the news too often.

“The FriendSafe Program provides a practical and discreet way for those at risk to gain the immediate support they need, when they need it most.”

High Tea With Friends guests will be greeted with a glass of bubbles, decadent high tea, raffles, live auction, and special guest speakers.

The Newcastle event will be held on Saturday, 22nd of May between 2-5 PM at NEX – Newcastle Exhibition & Convention Centre

Tickets can be purchased online.

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