Australian High Commission
Solomon Islands

Red Cardim Vaelens: tackling gender-based violence through sports.

5 November 2015

                                                        Red Cardim Vaelens: tackling gender-based violence through sports.

Yesterday the Australian High Commission launched an exciting new initiative, “Red Cardim Vaelens” which will work with the local sports clubs in Solomon Islands to involve young soccer and rugby union players in combatting family violence.

The Australian Ambassador for Women and Girls, Natasha Stott Despoja officially launched the “Red Cardim Vaelens” initiative during her visit to the Solomon Islands this week.

 “Sport is a key part of life in Solomon Islands, and therefore provides a powerful vehicle for creating social change” Ambassador Stott Despoja said.

She went on to say ‘preventing violence is everyone’s responsibility, both men and women need to work together to address this challenge’.

Australian High Commissioner Andrew Byrne and Australia's Ambassador for Women and Girls Natasha Stott Despoja and sports club representatives at the launch of the Red Cardim Violence Project

The Australian High Commissioner, Andrew Byrne also spoke, saying “This initiative is the first of its kind in the Solomon Islands. The Australian Government is committed to trialling innovative approaches to address family violence. We hope the teams and players who are part of this initiative will help spread the message that family violence is never acceptable”.

Delivered together with Live and Learn, “Red Cardim Vaelens” will provide leadership training and mentoring to young sports players to be role models and advocate an end to family violence in their local communities.

This program will be part of the Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development, Australian Government’s major flagship initiative to supporting gender equality in the Pacific.

Seven clubs across Honiara and Malaita are participating in the program. The clubs are: Matangiki Rugby Club, Solomon Warriors Football Club, Western United Football Club, Hana Football Club; Ambu Football Club, Auki Tigers Rugby Club, and GB Football Club.