It's never too late for violent men to change their behaviour.

That's the view of Ngati Ranganui domestic violence programme facilitator Franklin Ririnui, who helps Tauranga men address their propensity towards domestic violence.

"The men that are here, they're sitting alongside guys that are in the same boat as them, and when it comes to people bull****ing about violence, you can't lie to the guy sitting right next to you because he's been there, he's done it, he can smell it, he can taste it.

"They see that stuff straight away. I think we provide the right environment for these guys to actually be open and talk about stuff like this," Mr Ririnui said.


Most men were referred to the programme, but four or five a year came on their own accord.

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"To me it's a pretty low number, but it's probably four or five men who could have been pricks at the end of the day," he said.

"They've actually got the guts to come through the doors and actually address their anger issues and their violence issues."

Mr Ririnui said many of the men who attended the programme had experienced family violence in their past.

"A lot of them do suffer emotional pain and they don't actually realise what violence they've had until they hit rock-bottom," he said.

Men who continued the cycle of violence risked passing on the same behaviours to their children.

"A lot of them don't actually realise that until they come to a programme and they sit down and get the asked the hard questions - what are the impacts of your domestic violence on your woman, on your family, on your children, on the community?


"It's a very scary thing for men who are grounded in violence. They don't know anything else but violence. It's giving them the tools to make better choices out there," he said.

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"When they should come in is when they start experiencing any type of violence - or if they are even thinking it, even if it's in their mind - and they need that little bit of support and nurturing to maybe put them back on the right pathway."

- If you need help or know someone who does, call Ngati Ranginui on (07) 571 0934, or Tauranga Living Without Violence on (07) 577 9297 or email
Where to get help:
Lifeline: 0800 543 354 (available 24/7)
Suicide Crisis Helpline: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
Youthline: 0800 376 633
Kidsline: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
Whatsup: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)
Depression helpline: 0800 111 757 (available 24/7).

- If it is an emergency and you feel like you or someone else is at risk, call 111.