With the Love of Avon

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Joann is a local lady from the Mountain Ash area. A bubbly mum, with five children in her family (four step children) nobody would guess the difficulties she has overcome to be the success she now is. Suffering severely from four types of epilepsy and having battled to overcome sexual abuse in her early life, Joanne was finding it impossible to get a job and struggling financially. Inspiration came from her friend Paul, a local Avon Sales Leader and retired army soldier, who introduced her to the benefits of working for Avon. Working together they soon fell in love and their business and relationship went from strength to strength.

Her Avon earnings have enabled her to save up for the perfect wedding to her partner Paul in sunny Jamaica, which took place in February – something she has dreamed of since a child. Her Avon earnings even meant that she could buy a dream designer wedding dress! Both Joann and Paul are hoping to have saved up enough from their Avon earnings to eventually be able to afford to buy their own house and complete the family picture.

Before she started her Avon business Joann’s desperation had meant she had no choice but to lie about her health on application forms. With her confidence at an all time low, starting her own Avon business was the ideal solution. The idea of working 9 to 5 and not being able to look after her children was a no-go so she needed her own business and the option of organising her time around her role as a mother. She feels Avon has really changed her life in every sense of the word, she is able to work around her family and take care of her five children – she has been around to witness her children grow up and her son has even taken his maths GCSE early at the age of 13 – so has a bright future ahead of him, She has recruited over 100 women to work below her and her sheer hard work and determination is an inspiration to them all. She now feels completely comfortable with her epilepsy and the people she works with know all about her condition and are there to help het through thick and thin.

Today, domestic violence is the biggest issue affecting women and children in this country.  For the last three years Refuge and Avon have worked together to raise awareness of this horrific crime and to support women suffering in silence.  This August, Avon have launched a new campaign to reach more women:

1in4women – which focuses on the shocking reality that one in four women will experience domestic violence at some point in their lives.  Many people know that one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, but few know that twice as many are affected by the scourge of domestic violence.

The 1in4women campaign calls on women to learn and recognise the signs of domestic violence so that they can help a friend who might be suffering now, or in the future.   We are asking women to speak out against domestic violence and reach out to support a friend in need by downloading our new Facebook application – 1in4women <http://www.facebook.com/oneinfourwomen>  – or by visiting www.1in4women.com  . Both went live Thursday 11th August.

With only 16 per cent of women reporting incidents to the police, the majority of domestic violence is suffered in silence.  We hope to empower women with the skills to help make this stop.  But to do this we need to create mass awareness of the issue and of our campaign.

We are asking people to download our 1in4women app and tweet this campaign tweet: #1in4women experience domestic violence. I’m supporting @Avon_UK & @RefugeCharity to help break the silencehttp://www.facebook.com/oneinfourwomen


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