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Canberra women, living fearlessly

Georgia Rossiter and Elizabeth Harris

After the enormous success of last year’s event, the Fearless Comedy Gala is back again in 2017.

A night of “hilarity for charity” the Gala will open up the domestic violence discussion to the broader community on Thursday 7 September.

Recruiting some of Australian comedy’s finest, the Gala’s founder and comedian Juliet Moody has a new goal of raising $40,000 for the prevention and support of domestic violence victims with the Gala donating all proceeds to the Domestic Violence Crisis Service ACT (DVCS) and Toora Women Inc.

“I was so overwhelmed by the support of the Canberra community last year and the amount we were able to raise for DVCS,” says Juliet. “But what blew me away was the response from the artists and sponsors who were so incredibly generous with their time and resources to ensure the success of the event.”

Juliet puts this down to the personal nature of domestic violence issues.

“Domestic violence impacts so many people in our community and I think it’s why people were so willing to jump on board and help out. Almost everyone we approached had a personal connection to the issue in some way and wanted to do their part to help.”

And the result? A unique night of comedy which Juliet affirms “changed lives.”

DVCS ACT provides 24/7 support for women, children and men that are or have experienced violence in the home or in their relationship and Toora Women Inc. provide counselling, accommodation and other services available to women in need.

The focus of this year’s Gala is ‘Keeping Kids Safe’, a theme which Juliet says was highlighted by the results of last year’s Gala.

“Our donation to DVCS last year helped fund their Young People’s Outreach Program and we want to continue to support their work with this. Our aim is to raise enough money to ensure these vital services can continue,” she explains.

Jean Kittson

Jean Kittson. Image: Wiki Commons

This years’ gala will be hosted by veteran comedian Jean Kittson with a line-up including Jordan Raskopoulos, Randy Feltface, Catherine Deveny, Penny Greenhalgh and Canberra’s own award-winning Sparrow-Folk (pictured), of which Juliet is a founding member.

Indeed, this has been a deeply personal experience for Juliet.

“Comedy was what brought me back to living a full and free life. It gave me a fresh start and a chance to rebuild my confidence. As a survivor myself, I wanted people to know that there is life beyond family violence – you can live and laugh again.”

Image: facebook.com/jraskopoulos

Image: facebook.com/jraskopoulos

An opportunity to celebrate survival, the Gala encourages the community to come together, with Juliet telling us that the Gala “provides a safe and fun platform to engage an audience that might not usually spend a lot of time thinking about the very serious issue of domestic violence.”

If the Gala’s mission isn’t enough of an incentive, there will also be the chance for an audience member to win a complete styled outfit to wear on the night (and to keep after, of course), donated by Birdsnest – stay tuned for more details!

the essentials

What: The Fearless Comedy Gala
When: Thursday 7 September
Where: Canberra Theatre Centre
Tickets and more information: canberratheatrecentre.com.au/show/fearless-comedy-gala

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Georgia Rossiter

Georgia Rossiter is an almost Canberra local, hailing from the nearby town of Cooma in the Snowy Mountains. She's currently undertaking a Journalism and International Studies Double Degree at the University of Wollongong but still visits Canberra/Cooma regularly for holidays and work. She loves Canberra not only for its’ city vibe and abundance of activities but also because she can find her way around without using her GPS too much (which she cannot say for Wollongong). In her spare time, Georgia is an avid reader and music enthusiast whose goal is to attend as many concerts as her schedule and uni student budget allows. More about the Author

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Elizabeth Harris

Elizabeth Harris is currently studying Law and Arts at the ANU. She majors in Art History and has a minor in French. She has a hunger for fashion and food, and is a lover of the fabulous Canberra arts scene and many farmers’ markets. She has a deep interest in the intersection between the arts and law, and hopes to undergo further study in this area. Alternatively, she dreams of writing an art history thesis on the subject of memes. She can commonly be found enjoying a delicious cappuccino at any one of Canberra’s staple cafes, but particularly Tilley’s which she has frequented since she was four years old. When she grows up/old she wants to be just like Iris Apfel. More about the Author

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