MATE is a leadership focused primary prevention program that aims to make the complicated and diverse issues of LGBTIQ intimate partner and sexual violence accessible to the general population. Based at Griffith University, MATE aims to confront, interrupt and prevent violence occurring in LGBTIQ communities by working through specific issues and challenges faced by LGBTIQ people. MATE also aims to improve service provision to LGBTIQ people experiencing violence through training service providers in the complexity of the issue (violence often being coupled with issues of coming out and wider societal heterosexism and homophobia), the different ways in which violence can be manifested in LGBTIQ communities, myth busting, how to talk to and with LGBTIQ people experiencing violence (the importance of language), and what service providers can and should do or be aware of when working with LGBTIQ communities.
MATE is designed on best practices developed over two decades of delivering gender based violence prevention with diverse and varying populations. MATE runs workshops with service providers, government, universities, sports teams, businesses, the defence force, and community groups across all states and territories in Australia. MATE operates 2-6 hour awareness-raising sessions and 3-4 day train-the-trainer workshops where individuals are trained and provided with resources to go on to run their own sessions and work with their own service communities. MATE is a national program which will come to any and all communities seeking training, anywhere in Australia.
Following the success of the MATE LGBTIQ curriculum in Australia, in 2017 MATE will be established in the USA to work with LGBTIQ communities in confronting intimate partner and sexual violence.
Ultimately, MATE seeks to inspire leadership by empowering participants with tools to feel confident addressing harmful and abusive behaviour within LGBTIQ communities.