When Scarborough resident and author, Ros Jones signed up to do the McCain 10k run in the North Yorkshire town this October, there was only one charity she had in mind to support, IDAS (Independent Domestic Abuse Services) – the specialist Yorkshire charity supporting people experiencing domestic abuse and sexual violence. Subsequently, Ros discovered October is also Domestic Violence Awareness Month, which spurred her desire to do more to support the charity with the launch of an inaugural event.

Let’s Talk Domestic Abuse is being held at The Bar Convent in York on Thursday 20th October, 2pm-5pm and includes speakers discussing topics on workplace abuse, the different forms of abuse, emotional support and guidance and tales of survival and hope.

Ros, whose first novel, When I Was a Girl was published earlier this year, tells the story of domestic abuse being passed from generation to generation and was the catalyst for the event.

Mrs Jones explains: “I wrote When I Was A Girl during the pandemic when there were increasing reports on domestic violence and abuse taking place which made the themes of the novel even more pertinent. Speaking to people who have read the book, so many have opened up about how the topic resonates with them and their own experiences, I knew I wanted to take the conversation further and do what I could to support an organisation like IDAS who provides such essential support to people across Yorkshire.”

Ros adds: “Although 1 in 3 women, and 1 in 9 men will experience domestic abuse or serious sexual violence in their lifetime, it’s still a taboo subject many do not talk about. This event is all about supporting a brilliant charity, bringing together people who can share their experience and expertise on the topic which will empower attendees with knowledge to help themselves and others. I’ll also be sharing excerpts from my book and why I wrote about the subject.”

Carmel Offord from IDAS and who is speaking at the event says: “I am delighted to be speaking at this event which aims to encourage us to talk about domestic abuse and reduce the stigma that can be a barrier to people seeking support. IDAS supports thousands of people across Yorkshire and there are still significant misconceptions about what domestic abuse is. Many still think abuse is just about physical violence however significant risk and harm is caused by emotional abuse, coercive and controlling behaviour. I look forward to joining the conversation and dispelling some of the common myths at this event. Our thanks to Ros for raising vital funds to support our work.”

The event, which is open to all to attend, will donate all profits to IDAS, with pay-it-forward options available.

Tickets can be bought at https://letstalkdomesticabuse.eventbrite.co.uk