A celebration of women’s voices in film.

Women’s Lives Leeds* have partnered with Heart and A Listening Space to show a season of films by women writers/ film makers as part of the centenary celebrations of women’s suffrage.

We are delighted to let you know about the first in the series of Women’s Voices in Film, including a Ted Talk.  Please come along and support this event, tickets are only £5.00/£4.00, hosted at HEART in Headingley on Wednesday 24 October from 7-9.30pm.  Click here for more information and to purchase tickets.

You can also see the poster here –

The Divine Order Poster – final

*Womens Health Matters is a partner in the unique collaboration of 11 women and girls organisations in Leeds – Women’s Lives Leeds.

Meet more of our Trustees!

A few months ago we got to know some of our trustees a little more, here we meet the fabulous Hannah and Tracey!

Hannah

Why did you become a Trustee for Womens Health Matters?

I applied to be a trustee for WHM because I had known about the organisation since I was a child in Leeds, and so had an understanding of the impact the charity has. I moved from a job in a charity to one in the local authority and wanted to stay connected to the third sector in some way. As I had time and hopefully useful skills to offer, WHM felt like a natural choice to approach about volunteering as a Trustee.

What is your favourite thing about Womens Health Matters?

My favourite thing about WHM is the fact that every time I read a report or speak to the staff about the work they are doing with women, I am overwhelmed yet again with what an incredibly important service WHM delivers. And that all the staff and all the trustees have a uniting belief that women can and should be in control of their own lives and health. It’s a great team to be part of.

What do you do outside of Womens Health Matters? 

I work for Leeds City Council Children’s Services, in the Voice and Influence Team. I coordinate participation, consultation and involvement activities specifically for children who are looked after or care leavers, including running two young people’s Council’s. My job also involves working closely with senior leadership, service leads and councillors related to Children’s Social Care Services.

If you had a magic wand what would you do with it?  

I’d give every little girl in the world unshakable self-confidence. And I’d make houses self cleaning – no more wasted hours scrubbing the bathroom!

 

Tracey

Why did you become a Trustee for Womens Health Matters?

I first became aware of WHM though the joint work with the Maternity Liaison Services Committee (now Maternity Voices Partnership). I am a doctor who works in the maternity units in Leeds. I am passionate about empowering women to make the right choices for them during their pregnancies. I have particular interests in supporting vulnerable women and supporting those women who may face challenges accessing services. I run a specialist clinic for those women who have had female genital mutilation to ensure they have the right information during their pregnancies and at the time of their births. As WHM also supports those groups of women, I wanted to be able to provide my own support by volunteering to become a trustee.

What is your favourite thing about Womens Health Matters?

Whenever I hear the stories and journeys of women who have been helped by WHM, it reiterates the importance of the work the charity does. Attending the AGM always makes me be proud of what women can achieve, despite often extreme adverse situations. It is so positive to see how women’s lives can change, given the right support and help through WHM.

What do you do outside of Womens Health Matters?

I am a consultant working in the two maternity units in Leeds. I always knew that when I qualified as a doctor that I wanted to work in Obstetrics. I am passionate the care that is provided to women allowing them to make and be supported in the choices for birth.

If you had a magic wand what would you do with it?

I would want all women worldwide to be able to access safe and free health care during pregnancy.

 

 

 

Fundraising news.

We are delighted to announce the support of two new funders!

The Pilgrim Trust is supporting Womens Health Matters with £35,661 over 3 years, contributing to the costs of our management team.  They want to enable us to continue to reach Leeds’ most vulnerable women, empowering them to overcome health inequalities, recover their health and regain control of their lives.

Trusthouse Charitable Foundation is supporting us with a one-year grant of £11,305.  Their particular interest is in our group work to support women and girls affected by violence and abuse.  Groups offer a safe space for women to meet others with similar experiences. We talk through issues affecting their safety and wellbeing. We know that women are the experts in their own situations and that with the right support they will find the best way to move forward. We help them build resilience and support wellbeing. We offer signposting, advice and referrals for additional support where it is needed.

Thank you to both Trusts for their support – it is invaluable!  To all those reading this…..if you work for an organisation you think can support our work, or as an individual want to make a donation or do something special for us to raise money, please do get in touch – we’d love to hear from you. You can contact us on 0113 2762851 or info@womenshealthmatters.org.uk

You can also donate to us directly via Local Giving.

 

 

Spotlight on our projects – The Key!

The Key is a project working with girls and young women aged 13-25 from across Leeds, funded by the Big Lottery Fund. We work with girls and young women who have experienced abusive relationships with someone, whether a family member or partner, or who are at risk of having an unhealthy relationship. There are three different strands to the project – our ongoing groups, individual support and our offer to youth settings.  We provide transport, refreshments and crèche where needed.

“I’ve learnt that the thing is like you can actually get through it, so if you just like if I didn’t come here I do not know at all how I would cope with things at home but now I’ve come and I spoke to people about it.”

We have three ongoing groups – our girls group, young women’s group and Moving on Group. Both the girls and young women’s group cover topics such as self-esteem building, managing difficult emotions, identifying abusive relationships, looking at what we want in relationships, consent, different types of abuse, staying safe, the impact of abuse on children, healthy family relationships and much more!  These groups meet weekly during term time in the city centre.

 

Our Moving on Group (MOG) is for those who have finished 18 sessions of our young women’s group. This group meets fortnightly and they look at some of the above issues in more depth, as well as looking at life skills and how to move on into the next steps of their lives, whether that’s going to college, volunteering or something else.

We offer individual support to those who currently attend our ongoing groups. This may be things like supporting people to access other services such as health care or housing support, working one on one around healthy relationships and staying safe, attending Child Protection meetings or helping develop confidence.

 “Me personally, I think because I’ve come to The Key I would be able, I would have the confidence now to leave a relationship if it wasn’t healthy for me, no matter how it affects the other person you’d have to put yourself first.”

Finally, we offer schools, college and other youth settings both one-off sessions or 6-8 week programmes around healthy relationships and staying safe. If during these sessions one of the young women would like further support, she’s invited to become a member of our ongoing weekly groups.  All of our work is free to attend.

 

All of our groups are really friendly and welcoming, we’re happy to come out for a chat with the young woman before she attends. If you’d like to know more about the project or would like to refer yourself or someone else, you can give us a call to find out if we currently have spaces or get more information here – http://www.womenshealthmatters.org.uk/what-we-do/the-key/