NOT NOW, NOT EVER: Draw a line in the sand
ROUGH patches of sand were carved out on Scarness Beach to pay respect to the Fraser Coast's silent victims.
The shapes in the sand represent all people in our community suffering from domestic violence.
This is because domestic violence and family can affect anyone, Maryborough Patrol Group domestic and family violence coordinator Sergeant Hayley Skyring said.
The hidden problem was made visible on Wednesday at a Fraser Coast Domestic and Family Violence Alliance organised event.
"The idea is to create a visual image for people to see of the effect domestic and family violence can have," Sgt Skyring said.
"I think it is definitely a successful initiative. I've had a large number of people stop and ask what is going on and we have invited them to participate. Most of them have taken us up on that.
"Unfortunately statistics tell us the majority of victims are women, however it is not just that one initial person that an act of domestic violence affects.
"It can affect their children and the rest of their family both psychologically and emotionally, the ongoing effects in the community include financial effects and our resources being stretched to capacity."
Sgt Skyring reassured the community that help was available.
"If you don't know how to find it you can contact the police and ask us, but whatever agency you speak to will be able to refer you to an agency that can help you," she said.
A wide cross-section of the community turned up at the event, from lawyers to students and police officers.
They used rakes and cut-outs to create the stunning visual effect as part of Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month.
Noosa-based sand sculptor Aaron Mccormick was contracted to create two large hands releasing a dove to symbolise peace.
"We are trying to free people up and this represents peace, freedom and not holding back," he said.
"It is rather fitting I think. This is a cause I am certainly passionate about it, there needs to be a change, it needs to be out there and finished with."
Fraser Coast mayor George Seymour said the artwork was all about raising awareness about a significant local issue.
"It is something which needs to be brought out into the open for the whole community to observe and address," he said.
"It is a very significant issue on the Fraser Coast, you see it all the time in court, you see it in families, our doctors and social workers see it.
"I think one of the major tragedies of domestic violence is when people are trapped in their homes.
"To be targeted, assaulted and hurt in your own home is something that really cuts to the heart.
"It is hidden away and often just accepted as normal but it is something that we need to acknowledge that it is not OK, and something the whole community needs to stand up against."
QLD DV hotlines
- DVConnect Womensline: 1800 811 811
- DVConnect Mensline: 1800 600 636
- 1800RESPECT national hotline: 1800 656 463