Nicola Di Bona's bold plan to educate the community about sexual assault has reached a milestone after she launched her awareness organisation Cheyah.
In front of friends, family and community members Cheyah was launched at the Glasshouse in Port Macquarie on June 29.
"I was really happy with the turnout at the launch of Cheyah because it gave a strong sign to the community that it will take everyone to stop sexual assault," Nicola said.
"It went exactly how I had hoped and everyone was really engaged with what I was talking about.
"My organisation is all about providing resources to help victims, survivors and those who get asked to help.
"Without resources and options for assistance lasting trauma haunts survivors which is an unnecessary burden on top of the experience of assault."
Nicola is currently in year 12 at MacKillop College, is a participant in NSW's Youth Parliament in 2019 and has been selected as part of an Australian youth delegation to Europe in January 2020.
She said there are three aspects of her organisation which are all crucial to helping survivors.
"Firstly we want to raise awareness for what sexual assault actually is so that people can understand why it is such a problem in our community," she said.
"Then there is raising awareness for all the services available to people. Often when you are assaulted or someone tells you about their experience you can be unsure about where to go for help.
"So I want to provide people with the knowledge of their options so they know what they can do. Sometimes victims don't know where to seek help or what their options are and this will help.
"Lastly it is all about education. Education and then prevention is key to helping stop assault in our community."
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