This week I had the privilege to go to Canberra to be the Keynote Speaker at Parliament House for the launch of the Penda App. I am also honoured to be the Ambassador. It feels good to be able to give back after all the support I received when I left my abusive relationship.

What is the Penda App?

Penda is a national, free, simple to use app combining financial, personal safety and legal information and referrals for women who have experienced Domestic and Family Violence (DFV). Penda helps to break the cycle of violence and build safer, more secure futures. Penda was developed by Women’s Legal Service Queensland (WLSQ) with funding from Financial Literacy Australia. A national communication and education campaign is made possible with support from Australia’s largest credit union, CUA.

It is hard to understand when you are in it.

When someone is dealing with DFV it is difficult to understand what is happening or even recognise it as abuse. I know I didn’t, in fact it wasn’t until months after I left I realised what I had been through was financial abuse. I had never even heard of the term financial abuse. Knowing what was happening to me would have equipped me with the information I needed at the time I needed it.

Information when in your hand.

The Penda App along with describing the forms of abuse to give women an understanding of what is happening to them; also gives valuable information on the resources available. It covers financial, legal, housing, children among other things. This is a one stop place for information when dealing with DFV.

It would have made such a difference to me.

I know it would have made a huge difference to me when I was dealing with DFV. I was dealing with homelessness, poverty, court, family matters, Centrelink, Child Support. I was lucky to be in refuge and receive guidance through many of these issues. But, even so this app would have mad my life so much easier. I could have taken the information in my own time and had a better comprehension of what was happening to me and what my next steps were. And importantly where to seek help.

Information on how to download the Penda App:

Please remember to think about your safety before downloading.

If you have a family member, friend or colleague you suspect of being in an abusive relationship Penda is a valuable resource.


Lisa McAdams

About Lisa: Lisa is a survivor of domestic violence who shares her story openly; along with knowledge and understanding of abuse and her experience from her time in corporate to help companies develop an organisational culture of empathy and understanding.

She helps by bringing insights on this complex and emotional subject, ensuring managers understand the issue, the signs and how to communicate with those impacted by domestic violence.

Lisa is passionate about educating workplaces so they can ensure women in abusive relationships remain in the workplace. Because employment improves outcomes and can ultimately save lives.

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