On Friday morning, the SVSG President gave a eulogy during the funeral service of a 50 year old mother. She was one of the many victims of domestic violence, with her horrific death highlighting the hole, long existed in the formal support system for victims, despite the degree of the violent acts that we now see in our society today.
Speaking there on the work that we did for her and the many abused mothers, on how we stand up for the voiceless and being family to them. The wish of wanting to do more beyond the means that we have, and wishing that the system to protect the abused, could have saved her. This is SVSG taking its work to heart.
Sadly, it has to take another life for the lessons to be learnt. Because in giving the eulogy we kind of understand the anger expressed by the family as none of the mother’s children were in sight. And this was the last thing she asked for, and continued to live for, when she sought SVSG’s assistance in applying for a Protection Order through the Courts. The absence of her children even to bid her farewell was the sad reality.
And this has been one of the many challenges that SVSG has been dealing with in our role to be the voice of the voiceless. Fighting for the survivors of violence for justice is still a battle, and even in their death, we have to continue to be their voice, for their families and their children. This is the caring nature of our work.
For the deceased mother, none of us understood the load she was carrying or what was in her mind. Because for 8 months, she has been carrying a burden of an abused mother separated from her children. Her anger and hatred were the only ways she could express her feelings; something she could not express in her own words.
A life could have been saved; and the lives of this mother’s children will never be the same again.
On Friday evening, SVSG received this message “I thank God for all of you who work hard and tirelessly for the voiceless and the forgotten.” Thank you for words of encouragement, we needed this, but for the sake of the victims of violence, their families and their children, we desperately need help because one life lost, is one life too many.
As a family, let us pray for the children’s wellbeing, who up until now, do not know that their mother has died. May she rest in peace.
President of SVSG Samoa