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25 January 2011
North Ayrshire White Ribbon Junior Football Initative launched

On Saturday 22nd January 2011 North Ayrshire's local Junior Football teams were the first Junior Football teams in Scotland to unveil their support to the White Ribbon Campaign.

This initiative has been driven by North Ayrshire Violence Against Women Forum (VAW) and supported by Community Planning Partners (CPP) utilising the White Ribbon Campaign - an international campaign to end domestic violence locally. White Ribbon Scotland were delighted to attend the matches and wish to thank supporters in North Ayrshire for their support!

Personalised White Ribbon Campaign banners calling for local men to speak up about domestic abuse were unveiled at the grounds of at Ardrossan Winton Rovers, Irvine Victoria, Largs Thistle and Saltcoats Victoria Football Clubs with three local papers covering the simultaneous launches at Ardrossan, Irvine and Largs. Referees officiating at these games were provided with white whistles and wore white ribbon badges for the duration of the matches in support of the initiative. Local Community Policing Team officers supported the campaign by distributing information about the White Ribbon Scotland campaign at the games and 500 flyers were handed to fans together with Strathclyde Police / White Ribbon wrist bands. The initiative will be rolled out to the remaining six clubs of Irvine Meadow, Kilwinning Rangers, Kilbirnie Ladeside, Beith Juniors, Dalry Thistle and Ardeer Thistle during their home games over the next couple of weeks when they will each unveil personalised banners. Again, CPT officers will be on hand to deliver information, flyers and obtain the white ribbon pledge from fans. It is anticipated that over 1,500 fans will be in attendance at these forthcoming matches. It is anticipated that a further white ribbon initiative encompassing Irvine and Kilwinning Sports Clubs and Ardrossan Academical Rugby Club will be unveiled in Spring 2011.

The North Ayrshire Violence Against Women Forum, made up of representatives from each agency on the North Ayrshire Community Planning Partnership and has been working to promote the campaign locally to challenge attitudes about violence against women and to promote the message that domestic violence is socially unacceptable. The White Ribbon Scotland campaign was launched across North Ayrshire in May 2010 during North Ayrshire Community Planning Partnership week, and the Junior Football Initiative has provided the White Ribbon Scotland Campaign with another great opportunity to engage with men in the North Ayrshire area. With over 250 White Ribbon Pledge Cards signed we are delighted to have been able to raise awareness of the nature and extent of domestic abuse and also to add to our supporter base within North Ayrshire.

 

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In Scotland in 2011-12 rape reports increased by 13%

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