South Australia’s Office for Women will be recognised today for its work to prevent violence against women and empower victims, with a trophy from the 2016 Young South Australian of the Year.
Arman Abrahimzadeh became a passionate advocate of empowering women and working against domestic violence after his mother, Zahra, was murdered by his father.
Since being named Young South Australian of the Year, he has set out to acknowledge the work being done by individuals and organisations to improve gender equality and prevent family violence.
“I plan to present my trophy to 12 different organisations throughout the year, one per month, as a way to share this recognition with the many people and organisations doing fantastic work,” Mr Abrahimzadeh said.
Today he will present his trophy to the Office for Women in recognition of its work in the domestic violence sector.
Status of Women Minister Zoe Bettison praised the Office for Women for its tireless work for victims of domestic violence, and thanked Mr Abrahimzadeh for his strong advocacy.
“Mr Abrahimzadeh was named the 2016 Young South Australian of the Year in recognition of his work as a domestic violence campaigner and White Ribbon Ambassador,” Ms Bettison said.
“Domestic violence was unfortunately a normal part of childhood for Mr Abrahimzadeh and his sisters.
“Since the tragic murder of their mother, Zahra, by their father, Mr Abrahimzadeh has become a passionate advocate in the community to prevent violence against women.
“In 2015, he and his sisters established the Zahra Foundation Australia to assist women in crisis and empower them with education and financial independence.”
Mr Abrahimzadeh said it is important to acknowledge those working against family violence.
“I want them to know that what they are doing is changing lives, and in some cases, saving lives.
“I first awarded the trophy to the Central Domestic Violence Service, which helped my mother, and has continued to help me and my sisters after her death.
“This month, I am pleased to provide this trophy, which is a beautiful symbol of our country, its coastline and natural beauty, to the Office for Women, in recognition and appreciation of the important and life changing work that it does.
“I would especially like to acknowledge its work on the blueprint for the economic empowerment of women, Investing in Women’s Futures, to ensure a better future for all South Australian women,” Mr Abrahimzadeh said.
The Office for Women, which includes the Women's Information Service, leads the State Government’s work towards achieving women’s equality through developing policy and providing advice to the government, non-government organisations and groups and the community.
Officer for Women Director Fiona Mort will accept the award.
“It is humbling to be recognised by Arman in this way for work that we could not do without our many partners. both government and nongovernment, including women's domestic and Aboriginal violence services, Yarrow Place Rape and Sexual Assault service and the Victim Support Service.