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Published on Monday, 12 June 2023 at 11:00:22 AM

To help mark World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, the Shire of York is pleased to be supporting the York Country Women’s Association (CWA) by displaying the Purple Road project – a community art initiative aiming to raise awareness and education around the serious issue of elder abuse.


The team at York CWA has been busy making a two-metre section of ‘road’ comprised of hundreds of handmade purple flowers.  The York section will be on display in the Shire Office in the week of Elder Abuse Awareness Day on 15 June 2023. 


The Purple Road began in 2011 with an idea, a roll of material, some balls of wool and lots of enthusiasm. More than a decade later, it has become a collaborative artwork measuring over 30 metres with wide-spread community engagement. The Purple Road project’s peer-to-peer approach has enabled seniors to feel comfortable in the presence of other seniors and open up and talk. They feel they have a vehicle to share their elder abuse experiences but also to share their positive life experiences. They are heard and listened to. They are supported and empowered.


Monica Dwyer, CWA President explains “the members of York CWA have spent many hours knitting, crocheting and embroidering flowers in shades of purple; the flowers symbolise inclusion and the colour purple represents age and wisdom.  The members have personalised this section of the Purple Road by depicting the Avon River winding through the centre with the flowers arranged in meeting groups along the river.  It is a beautiful piece of work that shares respect and love for our elders and our community”.


Drop into the Shire Office to view the Purple Road and access some support information.  Elder abuse affects 1 in 6 older Western Australians and may involve many different forms of abuse.  The WA Elder Abuse Helpline and Information Service can be contacted on 1300 724 679, and provides free confidential information and support, if you or someone you know is at risk of or experiencing elder abuse.


More info:

  • WA Elder Abuse Helpline and Information Service: 1300 724 679
  • Older People’s Rights Service: (08) 9440 1663
  • Vulnerable Seniors Peak: (08) 9472 0104​.

Image: CWA President Monica Dwyer with the Purple Road

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