LANDGATE invited community and business leaders in Midland and the Swan Valley Region to mark a milestone today as the land information agency celebrated its 21st International Women’s Day breakfast.
The #PressforProgress theme of the 2018 event attracted a mostly all-female audience of several hundred women.
Rise general manager services Helen Dymond said women made up the majority of people assisted by the not-for-profit organisation, started in 1983 by former Shire of Mundaring President Helen Dullard as the Hills Community Support Group.
“The women we support are often struggling to retain their independence or younger women escaping domestic violence,” she said.
In the past year, Rise has provided shelter to 60 young women and their babies at Kira House, a 24-hour crisis haven for young women aged from 14 to 18 years.
About 60 per cent of the women have an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander background.
Ms Dymond said the majority of services provided did not receive any government funding and she thanked the City of Swan and Landgate for their ongoing support.
Landgate chief executive Jodi Cant presented Rise with a $1000 cheque to help towards the costs of helping vulnerable women in local communities.
Guest presenter Transport Minister Rita Saffioti addressed the younger women in the audience when she spoke about the negative impact of social media.
In recalling a piece of early career advice from former WA Premier Geoff Gallop, she said: “Always remember, nothing’s ever as good as it seems, but nothing’s ever as bad as it seems,” she said.
She urged women not to conform to other people’s expectations and said her three young children were growing up in a world where women championing football was the norm.
City of Swan manager of customer and library services Debra Summers topped off the event with a powerful presentation on the importance of feminism, kindness, curiosity and courage.
She urged women to put themselves first and questioned why it was even necessary to have an International Women’s Day to celebrate women and their achievements.
Landgate hosted the event with the support of the City of Swan at the Mandoon Estate in Caversham.