Family violence will not be tolerated, and there are services available to help. That was the message from Moree's inaugural Ochre Ribbon Day event on Tuesday, which saw hundreds of people flock to the SHAE Academy for a family day out to educate the Aboriginal community about family and domestic violence.
Up to 200 people attended the event, hosted by Moree's Thiyami-Li Family Violence Service to bring the community together to participate in cultural activities for all ages, get connected with services and get knowledge to help prevent family violence within Indigenous communities.
"It's a cultural awareness day to bring services together to talk to the community about the Aboriginal culture and how violence is not a part of our culture," co-organiser Lizzie Haines said.
"This includes domestic violence, family violence and drug and alcohol abuse.
"The message is about early intervention and prevention."
Ochre Ribbon Week, which aims to end family violence in Aboriginal communities, is nationally celebrated from February 12 to 19.
The Ochre Ribbon Campaign raises awareness of the devastating impacts of family violence in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and calls for action to end the violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
About 13 services - including Pius X Mum and Bubs workers, Family Support, Northcott, SHAE Academy, Dhiiyaan Centre, Housing NSW, Elders Tent, Hippi Group from Miyay Birray, Homes North, Centacare, Women's Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Service and Department of Family and Community Services - attended on the day to connect with the community. As well as providing information to the community about the services they offer, each organisation had an art or craft activity for children to participate in.
There were also jumping castles for the kids, popcorn and fairy floss machines, as well as a free barbecue.
Thiyami-Li also raffled 10 Easter baskets. To enter, people had to fill out an evaluation form detailing what they know about family and domestic violence and their knowledge of services available in Moree to help.
No financial assistance was provided for the event, with each service coming on board to support it.
This is the first time an Ochre Ribbon Day has been held in Moree, and Ms Haines said Thiyami-Li plan to hold it annually from now on.
"We had good feedback on the day," she said.
"We had a great turn out and will continue to campaign annually to end the violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, especially against our women and children."