Men's Behaviour Change - Domestic and Family Violence
An exploration of self, identity, cultural
and learned behaviour for a
different way of being.
" I never heard anyone tell me before that I wasn't the problem, that the problems is the problem and that I am me. That picture we did really helped me think about things different"
An Indigenous Australian initiative currently being delivered in partnership with an international development agency to engage Aboriginal men among three regional and remotes communities to reduce and then stop - domestic and family violence among participants..
Natjul's Birlinka programme has a three-pronged approach to working with men around change behaviour and domestic violence that include:
A couple of hundred hours working among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men and community have informed our method and practice for engagement around some of the difficult things to talk about.
For example, when it comes to domestic and family violence our understanding and method for engagement is informed by the knowledge that domestic violence does not stand alone in a community. It is influenced and upheld by multiple factors of individual, social - collective, historical contexts that work together to create the conditions where such a destructive practice is introduced and sustained.
Our engagement method is an acknowledgement of that history and circumstance.
Our engagement method although acknowledging that history and circumstance, does not however, lead us to step away from working with people (men more particularly) around individual choices they make and the self-accountability we need to find in the change behaviour - domestic violence space.
Almost every organisation or company working in remote locations provide an engagement routine delivered as 'modules' that a facilitator leads participants through as part of an educational programme.
At Natjul, while we appreciate and acknowledge there is a place for delivering the more structured linear modules required to pass on knowledge, experience and learning.
We have learned from our engagements and work history among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across these spaces that very structured time limited modules can often slow or impede change behaviour around domestic and family violence. As a result over time we shifted some of our deliveries to an appropriate approach we refer to as 'thodules'.
A shift from an exclusively linear 'moduled' delivery toward a more inclusive, engaging, culturally appropriate thematic practice of 'thodules' has invited broader discussion not only among the men we engage, but also across services and community we work with.
At first sight or hearing the term, thodules, it is yes, simply the combination of two words - 'themes' and 'modules', yet, it is the intention and practice by the facilitator that inform the way people engage with the content and its relevance in their lives.
Thodules provide core non-negotiable topics we must talk about, yet enable other related discussions introduced and explored, such as culture, community and extended family relationships, intergenerational trauma and so on, all purposed with the intention for change behaviour around domestic and family violence.