We run person-centred, holistic projects out in the community and at LAWA, identifying women and children at risk of abuse and offering a lifeline to those fleeing domestic violence.
As part of our vision to end violence against women and children, Latin American Women’s Aid offers a range of support services for Latin American and Black and minority ethnicity women and children.
All our services are facilitated in our client’s own language in women-only safe spaces, conceived through a framework of a rights-based empowerment strategy and accredited by quality standards such as Advice Quality Standard.
Our Intersectional approach
BME women are simultaneously embedded in other experiences of oppression apart from gender violence, linked to their ethnic background, class, nationality/migration status, disabilities etc. Their experience of gender violence is hence shaped by what Black feminist theory refers to as “intersectionality”. BME specialist organisations led by and for BME women, like LAWA, have a unique understanding and knowledge of addressing the multiple intersecting needs of the women they support. We are therefore catalysts of positive change and advocates of justice in the communities we work in.
Our main services
The Refuge – We have been running the only women’s refuge for the Latin American community in the UK since 1987. The refuge is a secure, friendly, women-only safe space for women (and their children, if they have any) fleeing a violent relationship.
Family, Children and Young People Support Service – We provide a tailored service to help children overcome their traumatic experiences and settle into the refuge, supporting families to rebuild healthy relationships, implement safety planning, as well as offer floating support for women that cannot access safety.
Outreach service – For women who cannot make it to the LAWA offices to access our vital services, LAWA works in a variety of partnerships to provide comprehensive advice and advocacy services to Latin American and other ethnic minority background women through confidential outreach surgeries in Islington and South London (as part of our Breaking Free from Violence project).
Advice & support service – As part of our Breaking Free From Violence project, our free one-to-one holistic service provides women with comprehensive advice and advocacy services. Women in London and other parts of England can speak to a LAWA support worker about any issue they are facing, including domestic violence, discrimination, personal safety planning, legal remedies, welfare benefits advice, housing and emergency accommodation, child support, skills development and community integration.
Legal Advice Surgeries – In partnership with qualified and dedicated solicitors from various law firms, we offer monthly surgeries for women in need of legal advice on immigration and family matters.
Career Advice Surgery – In partnership with the National Career Service, LAWA offers monthly one-to-one career advice, support and coaching to build skills and increase employability of our beneficiaries.
Monthly social, cultural and activities – LAWA organises regular events such as cinema clubs, children’s fun days, yoga, picnics, excursions, pamper days, museum visits and English classes.
Our Current Projects
Women Weaving Change – Providing increased provision of holistic, person-centred domestic violence support and culturally sensitive counselling for women and girls at risk of gender based violence. In addition to this, through the Change Maker programme, this project empowers survivors to create peer support groups, raising awareness on gender-based violence, rights and entitlements for women to become agents of change in their community.
Samira Project – For women who cannot make it to our offices, LAWA works in partnership with IMECE Turkish Women’s Centre and Kurdish and Middle Eastern Women’s Organisation (KMEWO) to deliver the Samira project. This project provides comprehensive advice and advocacy services to Latin American and other ethnic minority background women.
Breaking Free From Violence – This project provides comprehensive advice, advocacy and outreach services to Latin America and Spanish/Portuguese speaking women and their children in London and other parts of England who are fleeing from domestic violence.
Family Outreach Support Project – This unique project offers tailored support to children and their mothers after they have exited a violent home. It helps to prevent the long-term mental health problems caused by experiencing and witnessing domestic violence. Mothers and children are given therapeutic and practical support to overcome their traumatic experiences, rebuild their relationship and play a successful role in community life.