National Anti-crime Award Winners Announced

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28th October 2010, 09:59pm - Views: 1932

National anti-crime award winners announced

The Australian Institute of Criminology says youth diversion, domestic violence

and community strengthening projects have led the way at the 2010 Australian

Crime and Violence Prevention Awards.

The annual Awards are run by the Australian Institute of Criminology as an

initiative of the Australian, state and territory governments. The Awards

recognise outstanding community-based projects that prevent or reduce crime

and violence.

“Three of the five national awards this year went to projects based in Victoria

while a further nine state awards were presented to organisations in Victoria,”

AIC Director Adam Tomison said.

“The state is clearly leading the way on crime and violence prevention and

making a real difference in the lives of victims, offenders and the whole Victorian


“While all projects have made a difference, many of the Victorian prize winners

have achieved outstanding results, significantly reducing the occurrence of crime

and in some cases reducing the re-offending of young offenders by up to 70

percent,” Dr Tomison said.

The Minister for Home Affairs and Justice Brendan O’Connor presented prizes

totalling more than $100,000 at a ceremony at Parliament House in Canberra


The national winners from Victoria are:

Operation New Start Victoria: A referral program for Victorian state secondary

colleges providing academic and vocational support to youth at risk of offending.

The Bridge Project: Providing support, training and employment opportunities to

young offenders trapped in a recurring cycle of poverty, crime and imprisonment.

Bsafe Pilot Project: An initiative combining a personal alarm system with risk

management strategies to reduce incidents of domestic violence.

There were also nine state award winners from across Victoria.

“These projects are already helping to prevent crime and violence by working in

partnership with their local communities.

“There is much that other communities in Victoria and across Australia can learn

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from the great work that has been done by these award winners,” Dr Tomison


“I hope the successes achieved by these projects can be replicated across the

nation, reducing crime and violence and helping to create a better quality of life

for all Australians.”<>


Operation New Start Victoria, Victoria

A referral program for more than 250 Victorian state secondary colleges

providing academic and vocational support to people aged 14-17 that are at risk

of offending.

Using police officers, teachers and social workers as facilitators, the program

aims to increase resilience, promote personal health and wellbeing, create

scholastic and vocational momentum and improve relationships.

Key outcomes:

*   More than 1200 graduates of the program since its inception

*   Significantly fewer court appearances recorded by all graduates of the


The Bridge Project, Victoria

Providing support, training and employment opportunities to young offenders

trapped in a recurring cycle of poverty, crime and imprisonment.

This YMCA-run program contacts and provides support to every young person in

custody in Victoria.

Key outcomes:

Has worked with 170 young offenders – 131 completing work readiness

training, 105 starting employment and 84 engaged in full-time work

A re-offending rate of only 3% for those completing the program, compared

with 66% for those who do not.

Bsafe Pilot Project, Victoria

An initiative combining a personal alarm system with risk management strategies

to reduce incidents of domestic violence. The project has achieved notable

success in reducing perpetrator violence and recidivism, particularly the

incidence of physical violence. Key outcomes:

69 women and 136 children have been protected with Bsafe since the project

began in 2007.

Only one client has since been physically assaulted by a former partner.


The Peek-a-Boo Club & BuBs On Board - $4,000 and Certificate of Merit

These programs address the consequences of family violence and provide early

intervention to stop intergenerational cycles of violence. An evaluation of the

Peek-a-Boo Club showed an increase positive attachment between mother and

child and a drop in hostility. The coordinators have been invited to present on this

groundbreaking work nationally and overseas.

Raped by a Partner - $3,000 and Certificate of Merit

A research-based educational tool for Australian health and legal professionals

and the community; the report, posters and postcards aim to raise awareness

that one in 10 Australian women suffer rape by their partner and have no one to

tell; a hidden, yet prevalent crime.

Northern Crisis and Advocacy Response Service - $3,000 and Certificate of


This service was established by a network of service providers to create a 24/7

face-to-face crisis response for women and children in the Northern Metropolitan

sub-region of Melbourne who have experienced family violence.

Who’s in Charge? - $3,000 and Certificate of Merit

This is an eight week structured group (plus a 2 month follow-up) for parents who

have a child who is abusing them or beyond their control. Connections

UnitingCare is currently running three to four groups per year.

Walk the Talk - $1,000 and Certificate of Merit

An intervention program focused on rural adolescent males aged 12–17 years

who use aggression and violence. Participants have exhibited aggressive or

violent behaviour toward family members or peers. The program aims to provide

anger management strategies, positive role modelling and alternative responses

to aggression. Participants are referred from school, police, child protection

services, welfare agencies or family members as a result of violent, overtly

aggressive or antisocial behaviour either at home, school or in the community.

Harmony in Cricket - $1,000 and Certificate of Merit

Governed centrally by Cricket Victoria, Harmony in Cricket enlists state-wide

partners to use cricket as a vehicle to engage culturally and linguistically diverse

(CALD) and Indigenous communities, promoting inclusion, social interaction and

an active lifestyle as the foundation for stronger and safer communities.

Partners in Prevention - $1,000 and Certificate of Merit

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The Network aims to create a positive environment for youth-targeted prevention

of violence against women programs across Victoria. Partners in Prevention

achieves this through multiple, overlapping and mutually-reinforcing activities

such as:

information sharing - providing consultation, a website and monthly email


advocacy - fostering relationships with government, involvement in

reference groups and facilitating network members’ involvement in

consultations; and

capacity building - quarterly network meetings, an annual forum and an

evaluation working group.

Mallee Sexual Assault Centre Multi-Disciplinary Centre - $1,000 and

Certificate of Merit

The Centre was established to improve the response and outcomes for victims of

sexual assault. It houses specialist police investigators, sexual assault

counsellors and forensic medical staff at one site to provide a ‘one-stop shop’

support service for victims.

Sexual Assault Prevention Program for Secondary Schools - Certificate of


The program utilises a whole school approach aimed at developing an

environment where positive and respectful behaviours and relationships are

encouraged and reinforced.

Tangible outcomes include:

increased disclosure of sexual assault;

increased access to support services;

increased capacity of schools to respond to sexual assault;

increased capacity of teachers to deliver sexual assault prevention


young people reporting feeling empowered and more confident; and

young people actively taking on roles of social action against sexual


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