Press release - Campaign on sexual violence



The Shield of Athena and its partners launched

a new multilingual public awareness campaign on sexual abuse:


“Do you have a secret?”


Montreal September 16, 2009-The Shield of Athena, in collaboration with other community organizations, health and social services, the ethnic media and the police of Montreal, yesterday launched its new public awareness campaign on sexual abuse entitled, “Do you have a secret?” Over 150 guests attended the event that took place at Ogilvy´s Tudor Hall.


This new campaign was the next step in the organizations evolution in response to the need of women victims of violence coming from ethnic communities”says Melpa Kamateros, Executive Director of the Shield of Athena.  For over 18 years, the Shield has been providing shelter, support and intervention services to women and children victims of family violence and has been a leader in community outreach.


Guest of honour,Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, Quebec Correspondentfor e-Talk Daily, was there to lend her support to the Shield’s mission in eradicating violence against women. “I am hopeful that this campaign will empower women to share their secret so as to ensure a future of freedom and safety for themselves and their children.”


Through the financial support of “Status of Women Canada”, The Shield of Athena, and its partners produced educational tools in 15 languages and in Braille, such as booklets, PSA’s and info-lines that will facilitate the transmission of information on sexual abuse, the laws, the resources and to raise awareness about sexual abuse in intimate partner relationships.


With this campaign, The Shield of Athena and its partners aim to promote access to vital information to women and communities who are faced with linguistic and cultural barriers. Dr. Banafcheh Hejazi, family practitioner and collaborator on the campaign says “I see women victims of sexual abuse who carry this secret until the day they die because they are not aware of the resources that are there for them or because they are ashamed and afraid of being stigmatized.”

In attendance were Commandant Vincent Richer, SPVM-PDQ 24, Mary Deros, city councilor for the district of Parc-Extension, Bergman Fleury, pesident of the Conseil interculturel de Montréal, Svetlana Litvin, representative of MICC: Immigration et Communautés culturelles.



For more information call Melpa Kamateros at (514) 274-8117