Liv­ing legacy will con­tinue

Re­claim­ing more lives

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By TERESA HAT­TAN

An­nah Stret­ton wants to leave a legacy that is more than a gor­geous frock.

Stret­ton and men­toree Krys­tal spoke in Mata­mata on Satur­day to a group of women from In­ner Wheel and the gen­eral pub­lic about Re­claim Another Woman (RAW), an or­gan­i­sa­tion that came into ex­is­tence ear­lier this year.

Al­ready there are more than 100 women in­volved.

RAW pro­vides a men­tor to help a woman who has been the vic­tim of do­mes­tic vi­o­lence by chang­ing her fu­ture through ed­u­ca­tion.

Most in the room on Satur­day would have been moved by what they heard.

Krys­tal, now 24, has lived through things no woman should have to go through.

She has two chil­dren and was in an abu­sive re­la­tion­ship with a gang mem­ber.

She ended up in a women’s refuge after she was beaten to within an inch of her life.

This is where she met Stret­ton, who had started to look into what soon be­came RAW.

On Satur­day, Stret­ton told the crowd that she knew there was more she could do in life. She said RAW was a sim­ple model in­volv­ing two po­lar op­po­sites work­ing to­gether.

‘‘We walk a jour­ney for life to ad­vance th­ese women.’’

Stret­ton knew her pro­gramme would be a game changer. She said it was about stop­ping the de­struc­tive cy­cle.

‘‘All I’m do­ing is get­ting women like my­self to walk be­side women like Krys­tal,’’ she said.

Krys­tal, who is about to grad­u­ate with a cer­tifi­cate in so­cial work, said Stret­ton had changed her life.

‘‘I’ve come from a life of noth­ing ... to now start­ing to dream,’’ she said.

Stret­ton said it was women like Krys­tal who would be­come an in­cred­i­bly strong voice in the fu­ture.

‘‘Th­ese are amaz­ing women,’’ she said.

Pho­tos: TERESA HAT­TAN

IN­SPIR­ING: Krys­tal is walk­ing a new path in life thanks to Stret­ton and her pro­gramme, RAW.

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