DOMESTIC abuse survivor Alanna Davis was last night recognised with one of only four awards by the Good Samaritans for using her experience to help stand up for and financially support enslaved women halfway across the world.The Jerrabomberra mother of nine-year-old Thomas, supported by her husband, parents and grandfather, was presented with the “International Champion for Women and Children” award at the society’s dinner at the Hotel Realm. She was up there with fellow awardees billionaire MP Clive Palmer and veteran ultra marathon runner and Australian icon, Pat Farmer.
In February she cycled over 10 days with a group other women from around Australia in a 400-kilometre challenge across Cambodia to raise money and awareness for women victimised by human trafficking and sex slavery in and across Cambodian borders. The group raised $100,000.
The 33-year-old says she was inspired to take part in the ride after reading the autobiography of Somaly Mam, a Cambodian woman who, at just 12, was sold to a brothel but eventually escaped, setting up her own foundation to help others in her situation.
Another driving force was Alanna’s own experience – she had been in two abusive relationships, starting from when she was just 18. Alanna says she will continue try to change perceptions that women who encounter domestic abuse are “weak”.
“I got through it, and I feel stronger now and more educated about the situation than ever before. I’m one of those people who wants to stand up for the minority,” she says.
She is in training for her next project, a half-marathon fundraising run in Cambodia.