Balloon launch to mark city’s ambition to end domestic abuse

Balloon launch to mark city’s ambition to end domestic abuse
University news

Wednesday 21 November 2012

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Press Team

A launch of 200 balloons at Coventry University later this week is set to mark the city’s ongoing commitment to ending domestic violence.

The event, which will take place outside the Hub on Friday 23rd November, has been organised by the University in conjunction with the Coventry Domestic Violence and Abuse Partnership (CDVAP) ahead of White Ribbon Day – a global campaign to raise awareness of abuse against women.

At 1pm a bunch of 200 coloured balloons will be launched skyward, 50 of which will be coloured white to commemorate the one in four women who become a victim of domestic violence during their lifetime.

Coventry University is hosting the event to raise awareness of and boost support for local initiatives which aim to protect women from various forms of abuse.

Chief amongst the initiatives being promoted are the European Commission-funded Daphne ICEBERG project – for which Coventry University is the lead UK partner – and the city’s Domestic Violence and Abuse Partnership.

ICEBERG – a metaphor used to denote the under-reporting of domestic abuse across Europe – involves the University working with partner organisations in Spain, France and Bulgaria to create and implement a model for a local coalition to combat gender violence.

As part of this goal to set up a local coalition, the University has linked up with the Coventry Domestic Violence and Abuse Partnership to tackle the problem, and is encouraging victims of violence to visit the partnership’s website.

The initiatives have already seen the University and CDVAP run several successful student debates on the topic – one entitled ‘Dispelling the myths around domestic violence’ – which led to the creation of a student resource website to help young people vulnerable to abuse.

Diane Phimister, associate head of the Department of Nursing and Health Studies and ICEBERG project leader at Coventry University, said:

Domestic abuse is still one of the most difficult crimes to identify and address, because many cases remain undetected and unreported. Through the ICEBERG project we’re aiming to work with students and the city council to raise awareness at a regional level, and markedly reduce the number of women suffering in abusive relationships.

Our balloon launch here at the Hub will be a show of solidarity between the University, CDVAP and the local authorities in Coventry’s efforts to eradicate gender-based violence. Coming just days before White Ribbon Day, it’s an important event to position the West Midlands at the forefront of an international collaborative stance against domestic abuse.

The balloon launch event will also feature a Christmas market, a vintage clothing fare and musical performances by duet Danny and Yet on the roof garden of the Hub, with a percentage of proceeds going to the charities supported through the Coventry Domestic Violence and Abuse Partnership.

To learn more about the domestic violence support initiatives in Coventry, please visit or go to

For further information, please contact Alex Roache, external press and media relations officer, Coventry University, on +44 (0)24 7679 5050 or email

Notes to editors

Daphne ICEBERG project –

The European Commission-funded Daphne III programme aims to contribute to the protection of children, young people and women against all forms of violence and to attain a high level of health protection, well-being and social cohesion. The ICEBERG project was conceived as part of the wider Daphne program. Its aim is to create a Europe-wide cohesive web that will contribute to the development of community policies which support women and children in abusive relationships.

Coventry Domestic Violence and Abuse Partnership (CDVAP) –

CDVAP is a multi-agency forum in Coventry comprising partners who work together against domestic violence and abuse. Members of the partnership include a number of specialist third sector providers working in the field of domestic violence and abuse; Coventry City Council; West Midlands Police; the Coventry Primary Care Trust; Probation; University Hospitals Coventry & Warwickshire NHS Trust; the Crown Prosecution Service; Housing; and the Magistrates Court.