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News & Events

Blog Archives

Celebrating 40 years of securing a safer future

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Solace Women’s Aid celebrates supporting 60,000 women and children in London over 40 years, with an urgent new appeal.

Solace Women’s Aid is celebrating its 40th year by launching an appeal to continue its life-changing work during a time of unprecedented demand for its services and cuts in public funding.

Since the beginning Solace Women’s Aid has grown considerably and has helped over 60,000 survivors of domestic and sexual abuse to rebuild their lives. They provide a holistic range of specialist services across London, including refuges, advice & advocacy, counselling, support groups and family & children’s projects.

Demand for their services continues to grow at an alarming rate. Mary Mason, CEO comments “As domestic and sexual violence is discussed more and more in the media we’ve seen a huge increase in the number of survivors who feel more confident in coming forward, disclosing their own experiences and seeking support. All this in a climate of significant funding cuts

Despite the challenges in the sector, more volunteers than ever are being trained on Solace Women’s Aid’s helplines and additional staff are being recruited to provide one-to-one counselling, group therapy and specialist legal advice. But there is a lot more they need to do to secure a safer future for women, hence the 40 year appeal.

The organisation is asking for a £40 donation from organisations, groups and individuals concerned or affected by domestic or sexual violence. This donation could, for example, provide two counselling sessions, three children’s play therapy sessions, one legal consultation or an hour of helpline advice.

The charity recognises that breaking free from domestic violence or escaping sexual abuse is only the start. This is why they not only provide practical advice and a safe space to live, but also help women and children recover emotionally and build a future free from abuse.

It doesn’t happen overnight and takes courage and determination but, with Solace’s help and the success of their new appeal, service users will continue to be able to develop the confidence and independence they need to rebuild their lives free from abuse.

One Solace service users sums it up “Your bruises go away and your bones mend. But it’s the despair, being hopeless. It’s a very dark place to be. Solace has given me hope.”

Visit www.solacewomensaid.org.uk/40years to make a real difference to the lives of women and children who have survived domestic and sexual violence. You can also spread the word by tweeting ‘Secure a safer future’ using @solacewomensaid and hashtag: #solace40


For further information please call Karen Ruskin on 020 7619 1350 or email: Karen Ruskin: k.ruskin@solacewomensaid.org / Alex Siepel: a.siepel@solacewomensaid.org

Find out more about our 40 year history

Download our 40 years of SWA press release


Our Magnificent London Marathon Runners!

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A huge thank you to Melissa and John who ran the Virgin London Marathon on

Sunday raising valuable funds for Solace  – every penny is needed to answer the

daily calls from women in London needing support to escape violence.  I hope you

are as proud of yourselves as we are! – it’s a monumental achievement and we are

eternally grateful for your support.  Thank you from all the women and children

we help.  You can still donate at  :



Help them smash through their targets – Help them to change lives in London.






Hunter and the Bear supported us – Now it’s Eric!

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Hunter and the Bear who gave their time and talents last year to our Rock Against Violence Gig in Islington will be supporting the one and only Eric Clapton this summer.. We’re glad you like them Eric – we agree with you that they’re amazing live – all the best HATB with your exciting career! We’re big fans………

Melissa’s ready for the big day! Let’s cheer her on…..

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She shares her initials with Mo Farrah – so we know she’ll make it in round the full 26 miles in great time.  Join us in wishing the incredible Melissa Friedberg luck and energy on Sunday for the Virgin London Marathon and to our other Solace runner, John Hitchin.  Thank you to both of you for your amazing efforts ….

Click below to help her reach her target and help us to save lives!








What are you doing for Women’s Day – March 8th ?

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International Women’s Day is celebrated on March 8th so spare a thought for the millions of women around the world who inspire us every day – mothers, sisters, friends, survivors, workers, bosses, artists, activists and inventors! Give a donation or become a regular donor by clicking below or donate to support our AMAZING MARATHON RUNNER MELISSA!  www.justgiving.com/Melissa-Friedberg

Enjoy the day and celebrate with us – Do something special for the women in your life!

Melissa’s Marathon – In training for the big event!

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Our heroine Melissa is training hard for the London Marathon on April 13th – Click read more below and donate to help her reach her £3,000 target and help her through those gruelling 26 miles!  We’re with you in spirit Melissa and eternally grateful for your fantastic fundraising efforts!  A marathon sized thank you to everyone who’s supporting her.

Please donate now at www.justgiving.com/Melissa-Friedberg


Donors boost Summer Scheme in Barnet

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After a local campaign £375 has been raised in Barnet from local businesses and their employees for the borough’s Summer Scheme. The Summer Scheme offers activities and trips over the summer holidays for mothers and children living in refuges, which are fun and valuable opportunities to relax and unwind. We could not run these schemes without donations so would like to say a big thank you to the donors!


Jeremy Leaf and Co for donating £100.

White Rose Motors for donating £50.

Smart Autos, Whetstone for donating £50.

West End Carpet Co Ltd for donating £50.

Comnet Associates Ltd for donating £100

And a lovely £25 personal donation from an anonymous employee!


Thank you all for your support!

Feeling inspired to #GiveSolace? Donate now online!

Sponsor Gwen’s Marathon Run

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Gwen William’s, Chair of our Board of Trustees, is running the London Marathon for Solace.

On Sunday 21st April, Gwen will be running the 26.2 miles London Marathon for Solace Women’s Aid!

Gwen and her border collie shep

Gwen with her faithful trainer Shep


Donations can be made through Just Giving: http://www.justgiving.com/Gwen-williams1


Gwen has set an ambitious target of £10,000 to help the women and children affected by domestic and sexual abuse. In 2010 Gwen raised £8,000 and we are confident that with your support she will surpass her own expectations.


If you can, please circulate this to your friends and colleagues and help us spread a virtual cheer!


Wgirls Pamper Day

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“It made me feel good and beautiful. Thank you!”

On Saturday 16th March Solace Women’s Aid and Wgirls held a pamper day for the women and children accessing Solace Women’s Aid services. The pamper day was a huge success with over 50 women and children attending throughout the day. Volunteers provided treatments to over 40 women throughout the day including neck and shoulder massage, Indian head massage, manicures and facials. We would like to extend a huge thank you to the Wgirls for their fundraising to put on the pamper day and for running a fantastic event on the day with a really positive atmosphere.


Here are a few comments left by women that attended the day:


‘It was a good time and staff really good. People in the refuge tell us about it and we come here. I hope the best wishes for everyone.’


‘What a fantastic group of women! Wonderful atmosphere. Thank you very much! Lovely to see kids smiling and get to know new people! I feel incredibly inspired and happy. I had a great day! Thanks everyone! Thanks to Delia who gave me an amazing head massage, I feel reborn!’


‘This few hours spend with other women (and children) getting pretty is fabulous! Pretty much like saying here is me, I am broken, take care of me for a few hours. It made me feel good and beautiful. Thank you!’


A massive thank you to the Wgirls! You can find out more about Wgirls from their website: http://wgirls.org.uk/



Seek Solace

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Seek Solace for International Women’s Day 2013 – a week of Inspiration, Aspiration and Creativity!

Starting Monday 4th March, including International Women’s Day on Friday 8th March and Mother’s Day on Sunday 10th March.


‘Seek Solace’ is starting with a week of events on the theme of inspiration, aspiration and creativity. There will be a variety of events for our women as well as informal workshops and discussion groups at our different sites across London.


There’ll be more updates throughout this week and following events here on the blog and on Twitter with the #SeekSolace tag.


We are delighted to have support from corporate friends;
Stella & Dot: from 20th February to 10th March Stella & Dot will donate a piece of jewelry to Solace Women’s Aid for every Geneve Lace piece purchased.


Designwarm’s Tech City IWD: On March 8th celebrating International Women’s Day, Designswarm are hosting a free evening event showcasing women working in design, creativity and tech around Tech City in East London. They’ll be raising funds for Solace on the night.


InerDiva: Fashion design, for the closet and home, will be supporting Solace through proceeds from their next fashion show in April.


If you’d like to support our work please contact Kim Bond at our central office on 020 7619 1353 or kbond@solacewomensaid.org. You can also donate directly online.