White Ribbon advocate awarded

Domestic violence survivor and White Ribbon advocate, Simone O’Brien, was recently awarded the Volunteer of the Year Runner Up award as part of the 2017 Third Sector Awards, recognising best not-for-profit practice around Australia.

Simone, a former Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) employee, was one of six finalists in the Volunteer of the Year category after being nominated by White Ribbon for her meaningful contribution to the not-for-profit sector and the community.

Simone said she was extremely humbled by the nomination.

‘White Ribbon nominated me for the work I do,’ Simone said. ‘I certainly don't do it for awards, but it is a lovely gesture.’

In June 2017, Simone bravely spoke to more than 100 TMR employees about her first-hand experience of domestic and family violence.

Speaking at the In Her Shoes: A Domestic and Family Violence Awareness event, Simone shared her harrowing personal story about being a victim of domestic and family violence, telling the audience to 'be brave and speak up' as it will help save lives.

The event helped to give a voice and put a face to victims of domestic and family violence and their families who are significantly impacted by the silent epidemic on a daily basis. Seven Network also attended the event and aired a news story putting the spotlight on domestic and family violence. Their message was simple: call it out, don’t be a bystander. Domestic and family violence is everyone’s business.

TMR is proud to be a White Ribbon Accredited workplace and is committed to raising awareness of domestic and family violence, providing support to those whose lives are affected by domestic and family violence, and empowering TMR staff to speak up against all forms of violence.

Transport and Main Roads Director-General, Neil Scales, who was personally moved by Simone's story at the In Her Shoes event, is participating in Australia's CEO Challenge Race for the third year in a row, raising awareness around domestic and family violence.