Zonta House, who are they and what do they do?
By now you have seen that Ametrine has partnered with Zonta House for the Unbreakable Fragility collection in celebration of International Womens Day…but who is Zonta House and what do they do?
I wanted to take the time to talk to Kelda Oppermann, CEO of Zonta House Refuge Association, so I could showcase to you the amazing work they do and highlight where the money from each sale of clutch will go to.
Can you please tell us about what Zonta House does?
Zonta House Refuge Association is one of the largest sole women refuges in Western Australia and has been operating for over 34 years. At Zonta House we are focused on delivering high quality, innovative services to prevent and reduce family and domestic violence, provide intervention opportunities and support services to assist in the recovery of women and children who have experienced family and domestic violence.
What does a typical day look like?
Zonta House operates 365 days a year 24/7 with every moment, hour and day being so different. Each staff member is motivated by their interactions with the women we work with and the strength and resilience shown in situations they have not created nor wanted.
There is so much diversity across and within each of our roles at Zonta House. We have challenging conversations, empowering moments, women who are inspired and lifted up by each other, women doing a boxing class, women learning about managing their finances, women doing a knitting group to make items to send to India, volunteers gardening and sorting donations, staff writing proposals seeking funding and managers who are looking at how we can continuously improve and work to have the greatest possible impact in what we do in our conversations to prevent and the services we provide to women and their children recovering from family and domestic violence.
What was your personal motivation to work in the non for profit sector?
I have seen first-hand the devastating impacts of family and domestic violence on individuals and families and the tragic and horrific trauma experienced by victims and survivors at the hands of violent and abusive perpetrators. I want to make a genuine difference and I am inspired by the strong women and men in my life who all have a strong sense of justice. Family and domestic violence is not acceptable – I do not want to be a passer-by and I simply want improvement and action.
What would you say to women, (or men), that want to help and show their support but don’t know how?
I encourage all members of the community to educate themselves on family and domestic violence and the impact not only on the victim and children but greater society. We need to continue to challenge the existing driver of family and domestic violence – gender inequality and we need to teach our children and young people about respectful relationships. The support we receive from the public is diverse but so valuable. For people or companies that would like to provide monetary or in-kind support, do some research on your local specialist providers, the work they are doing and whether their values match your own. Once you have a relationship and trust find out for them what would be helpful and have the greatest impact within whatever capacity you have.
To find out more about Zonta House or to donate directly, go to their website here