WITH more than 19,000 social based assaults in Victoria alone last year, local sporting clubs were encouraged to ‘Lace Up’ as part of the Step Back, Think campaign over the weekend, to help take a stand against social violence.
Players from various sporting teams across the Goulburn Valley donned a pair of orange laces as part of the campaign, in a bid to raise awareness around social violence, and the far-reaching impact a violent decision in the heat of the moment can have.
Step Back, Think’s Head of Education, Ben O’Toole is a lucky survivor of a one-punch assault that caused his brain to haemorrhage. Thankfully, he suffered no permanent damage and is making it his mission to encourage young Australians to use their head, not their fist.
“One wrong decision can lead to a life changing injury or death. It not only ruins the life of the victim and perpetrator, but drastically affects their families, friends and the wider community.
“Often social violence is driven by poor self-esteem, a habitual use of aggression or even the pressure of looking tough in front of your mates. By lacing up with your sporting team, you’re saying ‘no’ to getting into a fight and you’ll stop your mates from making a bad decision that could change lives forever.”