PCYC Mount Gravatt Highlights RUBY Program for Women for DFV Prevention Month

Ruby Program
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Every May, PCYC Mount Gravatt joins other PCYC facilities across Queensland in observing Domestic and Family Violence (DFV) Prevention Month by highlighting a free fitness and wellness session, dubbed the RUBY Program, geared for women. 

RUBY is short for “Rise Up, Be Yourself” and it aims to empower women with a series of one-hour or half-hour strengths-based training that ranges from physical fitness, open forum and group chats, healthy diet, and healthy connections. The sessions have been designed to build a woman’s confidence and self-esteem,  as well as teach the right tools to cut the cycle of violence.  

Developing a healthy body and mind is crucial to overcoming the trauma of a violent experience and if the women receive support from a like-minded group, they are likely to have a more positive experience.

Photo Credit: PCYC Queensland

Whilst the RUBY Program is not seen as a “traditional response” to domestic violence victims, its process is aimed at providing an access point for women who might need support and a safe haven where they could interact with other women, whether they have been victims or are still struggling with domestic violence. 

Qualified fitness and wellness instructors conduct the sessions along with female officers of the Queensland Police Services, giving DVF victims a chance to link with other resources or referrals. 

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“RUBY has been running for a number of years at PCYC Mount Gravatt, even continuing through online fitness sessions during COVID-19 lockdowns,” Sergeant Melissa Gilbert said. “Due to the need to protect the privacy of our participants, we don’t advertise the time or location, but we run the program weekly all year round.”

“The impact and changes I see in RUBY participants is amazing. Some women have come along shy and not feeling confident to talk in front of the group, and even just an hour later at the end of the session, it is like they are a different person.”

“Our fitness instructor describes the program as a safe space for women to exercise and showcase their inner lioness.”

Eighteen PCYC clubs across the state have a RUBY Program. Email mtgravatt@pcyc.org.au to enquire.