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Outreach   /  Madeleine Hetherton

Call Me Dad

Can a violent man change?


Impact areas




  • DIRECTOR Sophie Wiesner

  • PRODUCER Madeleine Hetherton, Rebecca Barry



A story about men who have perpetrated or are at risk of perpetrating family violence. At stake is the safety of children and partners, the stability of families, and the power we as a society have to intervene. These men have problems expressing anger, and other strong emotions, without resorting to abuse, verbal or physical. We follow these men as they attempt to change and heal their most precious relationships.

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90.31% funded
  • $327,000.00

  • $295,300.00

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Issue Summary

A short summary of the issue the documentary is addressing

.As a society we are struggling to find ways to stop family violence.

Call Me Dad is a documentary that shines a light on a potentially powerful part of the solution – group programs for men with histories of violence. Inside these programs, trained facilitators work directly with men to support them to change their behaviour and break the cycle of violence. But awareness of these kinds of programs is low, access to them is very limited and funding is hard to find.


What is the impact vision statement of the documentary?

The impact vision for Call Me Dad aims to build a healthier and safer community where women and children can live free from violence, and where men can be given the tools and training to stop violent behaviour.


What outcomes does the project hope to achieve from making this documentary?

We aim to:
- Create a powerful resource for professionals working in the family and domestic violence sector to use with their clients, colleagues and networks.
- Create an effective tool for advocates to help them work towards a larger and more secure funding model for domestic and family violence services.
- Alert politicians and influencers in government to the need for secure and greater funding for programs that hold men accountable, while supporting women and children living with violence.
- Raise awareness of the complexity and impact of domestic and family violence in the broader community.
- Communicate the link between domestic violence, and greater challenges we must address in order to create a fairer and safer society, including gender inequality, gender stereotypes and toxic masculinity.


How will this documentary achieve its outcomes?

.An impact campaign to be run from 2015 onwards will target professionals, advocates, politicians and government influencers, as well as the broader community.

We will utilise our broad and active network of partners and supporters to get the word out about the film, the resources, and the issues they address.


How will partnerships with this project help inform the project development?

Key partners to the film include White Ribbon Australia, Shine Lawyers and the Victorian Women’s Trust. Via these organisations, dozens of community screenings will been hosted, and the Call Me Dad film and education materials will be utilised to meet the needs of both general audiences, and audiences using the film for a specific purpose, for example as part of professional training or workshops.

We have strong relationships with leaders in the sector who work across service provision, advocacy and policy consultation with government. These include key personnel from Rape and Domestic Violence Services, Domestic Violence NSW, Our Watch, No To Violence and Domestic Violence Victoria. We also have relationships with some of the country’s most significant providers of family and child services, including Relationships Australia NSW, Relationships Australia SA, Baptist Care NSW, Anglicare NSW, Anglicare VIC and Mensline.

Audience Engagement and Social Impact

What actions does this project hope for its viewers after seeing this film?

We hope that viewers will:
- Talk about the film and the issues it addresses with their family, friends and colleagues.
- Donate to organisations working to provide prevention and intervention services to families experiencing violence.
- Join the call for greater and more secure sources of funding for families experiencing violence.

Measurement and Evaluation

What is the projects indicators for success?

Our indicators of success include:
- The volume of requests/licenses to use the film by professionals working in the family and domestic violence sector.
- The volume of requests/licenses from advocates using the film to raise awareness of the issue, and the funding and support required addressing it.
- More money provided by state and federal government to support people living with violence, prevent vulnerable people, and address gender inequality and toxic masculinity more broadly. This includes money towards evidence-based men’s behaviour change programs, alongside appropriate funding to support women and children impacted by men’s violence.
- An increase in the discussion in mainstream and social media about the complexity of family violence, and awareness of interventions that target men.

We will know if we have achieved our vision via monitoring, engagement and direct feedback from key partners, supporters and contacts in industry.