MATE (formerly called Mentors in Violence Prevention) is a leadership program focused on preventing all forms of violence. It utilises a bystander approach to prevention. The program does not view participants as either perpetrators or victims of violence. It views all participants as empowered bystanders who can confront, interrupt or prevent violence. The program seeks to enlist all people in the fight against violence by equipping them with the skills to be effective bystanders.
MATE is designed on best practices developed over two decades of delivering gender based violence prevention education training with diverse and varying populations. Topics covered can include: abusive and healthy relationships, sexual assault, alcohol and sexual consent, gang rape, sexual harassment, technology-facilitated abuse, jokes and language, gender roles and sexism as a system. The program aims to raise awareness of the level of abusive behaviour in our culture as well as the subtler issues that support a harmful and abusive environment. MATE training challenges the root attitudes, beliefs and behaviours that normalise problematic behaviour, and creates a safe environment for people to share their opinions and experiences about these volatile issues. Ultimately, MATE seeks to inspire leadership by empowering participants with the tools to feel confident addressing harmful and abusive behaviour.
- Raise participant awareness of underlying issues and unique dynamics of all forms of violence
- Challenge participants to think critically and personally (empathise) about these issues
- Open dialogue amongst participants about the dynamics and context of all forms of violence
- Inspire participants to be proactive leaders around these issues by challenging them to develop concrete options for intervention in potentially dangerous social situations
What makes the MATE program unique?
- Trainings provide the context necessary to empower participants to be proactive bystanders
- Teaches concrete bystander intervention skills for use in the most difficult situations
- Employs a discussion-based educational philosophy to make training sessions dynamic and interactive. MVP training sessions are not lectures;
- Uses teaching materials consisting of realistic scenarios involving various forms of violence;
- Works with men and women in both mixed and single gender sessions;
- Staff create a "safe space" for participants to learn from one another;
- Highly replicable, allowing organisations to utilise the curriculum long after the initial training.
Recognition for excellence
MATE (MVP) was explicitly named in Not Now, Not Ever: The Final Report of the Special Taskforce on Domestic and Family Violence in Queensland as “an excellent example of a violence prevention program that has been implemented in several communities and attracted widespread support” (p.167).
MATE is the Australian adaptation of Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP), created by Jackson Katz in 1993. MVP has been a cutting-edge industry leader since the early nineties, using a unique bystander approach to violence prevention. MVP is the premier program in the United States working with hard to reach populations, such as college and professional athletes, the military, and fraternities and sororities, on the issues of men’s violence against women for over a decade. MVP has been rigorously evaluated in the USA, with similar work currently being undertaken in Australia for the MATE program. Evaluations have found the program to be successful in creating sustainable positive change in attitudes and behaviours.
- MVP Evaluation Report Year 1 (PDF 1,397k)
- MVP Evaluation Report Year 2 (PDF 492k)
- MVP Evaluation Report Year 3 (PDF 295k)
Dr. Shannon Spriggs Murdoch is currently the Director for the MATE program. She has spent the last twelve years working to prevent men’s violence against women across the U.S., in Australia and around the world. She began developing; delivering and overseeing training for the Mentors in Violence Prevention program, and also served as the Director for MVP Australia from 2010 - 2016. Shannon has facilitated over 800 training sessions with various groups, including high school and university students and staff, professional athletes, businessmen and women, educators, social service providers and military service members.
Shannon also has significant experience developing trainers in the MATE and MVP curriculum. She has facilitated dozens of Train-the-Trainer programs, including work as a consultant with the U.S. Military and Australian Army. In 2009, she was part of a team that spent two weeks in Iraq conducting trainings for service members currently in theatre.
Shannon received her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration with a focus on Student Development from Boston College in 2007. She is currently a Senior Lecturer with the Violence Research and Prevention program at Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia.
For more information please contact Shannon on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0400 153 957.