Major Support For Reducing Domestic Violence

Two organisations on the coalface of the domestic violence crisis have received a major financial boost from The Hills Shire Council, sharing in $70,000 in grant funding.

Council resolved to award $40,000 to The Sanctuary, The Hills Women’s Shelter and $30,000 to the Lisa Harnum Foundation through its grant program to support the vital work they do in the community. 

Mayor of The Hills Shire, Dr Peter Gangemi said the work of The Sanctuary and The Lisa Harnum Foundation was vital in The Hills.

“DV in The Hills has escalated by 10 per cent over the last five years, and this is unacceptable. Therefore, Council is very committed to playing a greater role in reducing this crime in our community. 

“The Sanctuary and the Lisa Harnum Foundation are the two largest organisations in The Hills on the frontline against DV. Their work in our community is indispensable, providing accommodation, counselling and other services to women and children. 

Mayor of The Hills Shire Dr Peter Gangemi and Shelter Manager of The Sanctuary Brigitte Lees.

“The $70,000 awarded to The Sanctuary and the Lisa Harnum Foundation are the largest grants Council has allocated to organisations supporting domestic violence victims in a financial year. This shows the commitment of our Council to reducing DV and our support of the amazing work of these organisations”.

Mayor Gangemi said the funding comes on the back of Council partnering with The Hills Police Area Command and The Hills Domestic Violence Prevention Network on a high-visibility domestic violence awareness campaign. 

“Last year, we partnered with the Hills Domestic Violence Prevention Network and the Hills Police Area Command on the ‘Stop Domestic Violence’ campaign. We placed posters in prominent areas such as shopping centres and main roads to provide vital information to victims seeking help discreetly.

“Raising awareness is our strongest tool as a community against DV. Together, we can bring this heinous crime into the light and stop it.”

The Sanctuary provides women and children experiencing domestic violence crisis accommodation and case management services.

Chair of The Sanctuary Yvonne Keane AM thanked Council for the contribution.

“Every contribution is vital in helping us provide safe refuge and support for those escaping domestic violence,” Ms Keane said.

“Many who come to us, leave without a cent to their name and the clothes on their backs.

“This funding will help victims to rebuild their lives and reestablish themselves within their community.”

The Lisa Harnum Foundation supports women experiencing domestic violence through their Safe Room program, case management, counselling, education and monthly group support.

Founder of the Lisa Harnum Foundation Aileen Mountifield reflected on the impact the funding will have.

Major Support For Reducing Domestic Violence
(L to R) Founder of the Lisa Harnum Foundation Alieen Mountifield, Mayor of The Hills Shire Dr Peter Gangemi and Senior Case Worker Lisa Fraser.

“These much-needed funds will go toward our established Safe Rooms in Castle Hill and Rouse Hill,” Ms Mountifield said.

“The Safe Rooms are where women can access help in a safe and confidential space so they can receive the support they need.

“I want to thank Mayor Gangemi for his continued support and commitment in the fight against domestic violence.”

To receive the funding, both organisations applied for their respective amounts through the Other Financial Grant Assistance program.

For more information about the program, visit Council’s website,, and search for ‘Apply for a Grant.’

If someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, please contact 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732.