Elena Gosse, Australian Innovative Systems (AIS) CEO, is on a mission to raise money for domestic violence is personal.
When she was a child, her late father inflicted physical and emotional pain on her mother, herself and her siblings. He passed away in May 2018 after suffering a stroke.
“As he lay in hospital dying, the dominant monster of the past was transformed into a gentle man that craved love and forgiveness,” she said. “I began to understand my father had repressed his feelings and been so damaged emotionally for so long that he felt the need to resort to violence.
“As he lay in his bed, he told me he loved me and was proud of me. It was clear to me that he did not want to be the way he was but given his damaged self, he was unable to communicate. No one told him that violence was not the right way to express his feeling. No one taught him how to love and be vulnerable.
“From that moment, I knew I would keep that memory of the lost little boy that my father truly was. A man craving love. He understood too late in life that violence does not equal love and respect.”
Elena’s mission is to take a stand against domestic and family violence by sharing her story.
“My mission is to prevent more violence happening and to find out why perpetrators behave the way they do. It is a complex issue,” she said.
“As a society, we need to encourage men to connect to their feelings and to open up to loved ones; trusted friend, counsellor.”
The sad reality is domestic and family violence does not discriminate. It can affect anyone, at any time, and any social demographic – males, females, adults and children.
By sharing her story, Elena wants to encourage others to speak out and seek help, and also to try and stop violent perpetrators of the future.
“I believe showing vulnerability can be a sign of immense strength.”
This year Elena is trying to raise $50,000 to help women in need from a star-studded event in March – Moulin Rouge and Dancing CEOs – and the support of those in the community.