Partnering to help those impacted by family and domestic violence

 One of the more unfortunate flow-on effects of COVID-19 has been the surge in demand for family and domestic violence (FDV) support services across the country. 

In 2019, Western Australian tenancy laws changed to assist those facing FDV by improving and implementing best practice solutions to assist both tenants and landlords in situations involving FDV, as well as the property managers and agents who worked alongside them in sometimes difficult and dangerous situations. 

Rental Management Australia (RMA) – one of the country’s leading property management specialists with more than $2 billion worth of real estate entrusted nationally – in partnership with its information communications technology (ICT) provider Redline Ventures, has decided to take that one step further. 

In response to the challenges of COVID-19, Redline Ventures Director Noah Lee developed a social charity called ICT in Action, to put all volunteer ICT resources in the hands of those desperately in need. 

Together with Redline Ventures, RMA this week announced a partnership with the Patricia Giles Centre for Non-Violence in WA to help grow its corporate social responsibility footprint in the state, where both businesses are headquartered, and to make a contribution to the fight against FDV in WA. The aim is for this initiative to eventually be rolled out across the country. 

Kick-starting the campaign this week, their team joined Patricia Giles Centre for Non-Violence Director of Philanthropy and Partnership Cath McGregor and her team at their premises in Perth’s north to hand over thousands of dollars of repurposed ICT equipment and to hear more from those working on the DFV front line. 

The Patricia Giles Centre has been committed to ending family and domestic violence in WA for more than 30 years and provides crisis accommodation, outreach support, counselling services and education and training for companies and schools. 

RMA CEO Andrew Graham said the idea for the initiative and the partnership came about as Redline Ventures was in the process of upgrading Apple iPhones for all RMA staff across WA. 

Mr Lee approached RMA to champion the deployment of these underutilised Apple iPhones to those in the community at risk of poor ICT access. 

“We have seen the devastating impact COVID-19 is continuing to have in our community and when Noah came to us with this idea, we knew we wanted to contribute,” Mr Graham said. 

“As the effects of the pandemic continue to linger, we are pleased to be able to support those in our community facing FDV in some small way with these donations.” 

Patricia Giles Centre CEO Kirsten Shearn and her staff welcomed the donation of good-quality mobile phones and said they would be able to use them in a number of important ways to support their clients and families. 

“For some of our clients, donations such as these can mean those in vulnerable and highly stressful situations are able to access a reliable means of communication at a time when it is needed the most,” she said. 

Ms Shearn said simply providing those who might be at risk with tools to communicate improved access to employment and reduced the prevalence of women returning to a violent partner. 

“What many people may not know is that when individuals and families arrive in crisis accommodation all access to their existing phones, contact numbers and social media accounts is removed to protect their personal safety, which makes donations like these are really important,” she said. 

Mr Graham said he hoped others in the property management sector and real estate industry more broadly would join them in the initiative and in making a meaningful contribution to the communities in which they operated. 

Source: The West Australian, Real Estate, 24/10/20

Pictured: (L-R): Rental Management Australia CEO Andrew Graham, Patricia Giles Centre for Non-Violence North West Metropolitan Safe at Home Worker Cheryl Boneham, Redline Ventures Director Noah Lee, Rental Management Australia Chief Financial Officer Chris Wiese, Patricia Giles Centre for Non-Violence Director of Philanthropy and Partnership Cath McGregor and Rental Management Australia Joondalup Branch Manager Erin Wallis.