This week Brighton Women’s Centre (BWC) marked their 45th anniversary by hosting their first conference, ‘Time for Unity’. For the celebration event they brought together women they have helped, support services they’ve inspired and inspirational speakers from across the country.
Over the years they have developed vital community hubs offering counselling services, peer group drop-ins, crèche facilities, food banks and accommodation support.
Katy Bourne OBE has supported BWC for a number of years. In 2017, Katy gave them a grant to set up the Inspire Project so they could also offer specialist support to women caught up in the criminal justice system and help reduce re-offending.
Sarah (not her real name) is one of the hundreds of women this project has helped. She has battled with drug addiction most of her life and, as a result, served a short term prison sentence. BWC – one of the oldest women’s centres in the country – have helped her face her past trauma and turn her life around. Sarah said: “BWC are different, they actually get right down to the core of the problems and help to rebuild women like me who have no self-belief or self-worth.”
Sarah is now co-facilitating a peer-to-peer support group and is due to start training to become a mentor with the Community Rehabilitation Company probation service. She added; “I can’t wait to help people rehabilitate their lives.”
“Brighton Women’s Centre get right down to the core of the problems….”