Women’s Aid – About us

Women’s Aid is the national charity working to end domestic abuse against women and children.
We have been at the forefront of shaping and coordinating responses to domestic violence and abuse through practice for almost 50 years. We empower survivors by keeping their voices at the heart of our work, working with and for women and children by listening to them and responding to their needs.

Women’s Aid was founded on women’s struggle against patriarchy, sexism and male violence and grew out of the Women’s movement in the 70’s and 80’s. Today we take an intersectional approach to our work to end domestic abuse and stand with other feminist organisations leading the way in eradicating Violence Against Women and Girls.

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How to Do Social Work: A basic guide from one of social work’s leading authors

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Neil Thompson’s Lessons for Living – There’s no need to shout

Stereotyping can be seen as a very real danger when you consider how often we are fed inaccurate, distorted and oversimplified stereotypes by the media. There is therefore a very strong need to be ‘stereotype aware’ and try to makes sure as far as possible that we do not allow ourselves to be influenced by them. One such stereotype that I have come across time and time again is the assumption that certain people are likely to be hard of hearing and that it is therefore necessary to shout. Older people are a prime target for this type of stereotyping, but disabled people are not immune to it either. While the incidence of hearing loss is indeed greater in the older population than in the general population, this is far removed from assuming that all older (or disabled) people have a degree of hearing loss. It is easy enough to adjust our volume if we need to, and so there is no need to shout as a general rule, as that just reinforces stereotypes and can be intimidating. But, such is the prevalence of stereotypical thinking that very many people resort to raising their voice without even realizing that they are doing so.

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How learning outside improves wellbeing

Do you have school playground memories? Did they involve climbing trees, rolling around in grass, maybe picking flowers? If so – count yourself lucky! Many children’s playground experiences involve tarmac and concrete, and a significant lack of green. With more and more research coming out about the important role that nature has in supporting our mental wellbeing, combined with the worrying stat that 1 in 6 children are already feeling the effects of poor mental health – it’s about time we make greenery in playgrounds a necessity, rather than a nice to have.

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The Professional Social Worker: An essential text for all social workers

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When faced with deadly events, leaders react differently to their own fears and grief

During wars, natural disasters and other emergencies, when people’s death anxiety is heightened, some leaders start caring more about their own interests and welfare, while others become more considerate and committed to helping their teams. Chidiebere Ogbonnaya studied 595 leaders from workplaces in the UK, China and Pakistan. He writes that those with a positive mindset were less anxious about mortality and more focused on leading well.

In today’s business world, discussions about mortality are often overlooked, even though death reminders are all around us. From global pandemics, wars, and natural disasters to personal trauma and emergencies, these events create mortality cues that affect individuals, jobs, and organisations. But what about leaders? How do they respond to these mortality cues, and what impact does this have on their teams?

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Connect with Neil Thompson online! For Neil's blog and more resources

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Race and inclusion in secondary school art education

Art is one of the only subjects that explicitly offers a space for personal exploration, where students are encouraged to respond to the world and their place within it. Art lessons are therefore a unique opportunity for students to explore their own identities, heritage and experiences, and those of others. It is vital that art education is inclusive and inspiring for all students. That’s why the Runnymede Trust and Freelands Foundation partnered to deliver Visualise, the first major research into race and ethnicity in art education. We want to ensure art education is accessible and fulfilling for all students, and that teachers are supported to deliver a broad and engaging curriculum.

Our research confirms what art educators have been saying for years: that art education in the UK is at crisis point. Although teachers are doing the best they can to nurture diverse art practices within their classrooms, their best efforts are rooted in an education system that cannot support either students’ or teachers’ efforts to improve their experiences of art education.

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Twitter: Follow Neil Thompson on Twitter

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Neil Thompson’s Lessons for Living – Dadirri listening

Listening, of course, is more than just hearing. It is about paying attention to someone in a way that creates a genuine human connection. Sometimes that connection is enough to enable the person concerned to feel stronger, more confident and better supported in dealing with their difficulties. Listening is an important first step in terms of exploring potential solutions, but at times listening is enough on its own to find the strength to move forward positively. ‘Dadirri’ is a concept drawn from Australian aboriginal culture which refers to the type of listening that creates that all-important bond, listening that gives a strong and genuine message that we are concerned and that we are here to help without judgement. It could be described as listening with our heart, rather than just with our ears. When you have been on the receiving end of such listening you will know about it, as you will feel the positive, empowering effects of it. Learning how to develop dadirri listening is therefore an important step forward for us to take.

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A Career in Social Work: Part biography, part overview of social work careers

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