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Today we have the following Refuge vacancies:


West Mercia Women's Aid started its life in Hereford, where, as in other parts of the country, Women's Aid grew out of the women's movement of the late 1960s and early 70s, when the issue of violence in the home became highlighted. The group came together in the late 70s, made up entirely of committed volunteers, many of them survivors of domestic violence. The initial task was to raise awareness and lobby for services, but the group quickly realised the urgent need to provide some support, and a helpline and advocacy service was set up, again entirely run by volunteers, to support and provide practical assistance to women in Herefordshire.

Hereford Women's Aid was formalised as an organisation in 1982, joined the Women's Aid Federation, and became registered as a charity in 1984. In November 1983, with the support of the then Hereford City stop-domestic-violence-logoHousing Department who provided the property, a women’s refuge opened in Hereford. Dedicated female volunteers met in the refuge once a week to discuss the running of the service with the women and children using it, and continued to run a 24-hour helpline via Samaritans to ensure that help was available and admissions could happen at any time of day or night. From the beginning, the 4-bedroomed refuge was almost always full to capacity.

In April 1985, through funding from the then Manpower Services Commission, the first two part-time workers were appointed, and the voluntary Management Committee formalised. More permanent funding was accessed in 1989, via a contract with Social Services, and additional staff were employed with the ability to deliver more comprehensive support services to families staying in the refuge.

Since then, the organisation has moved from strength to strength. In January 1994, we moved to a new purpose-built refuge in Hereford, provided by Worcestershire Housing Association, and began to develop outreach and resettlement services, as well as expanding our services for children. In September 1999, the organisation changed its name to Herefordshire WA, and was incorporated as a Charitable Company Limited by Guarantee, with an expanded and dedicated Board of Trustees.MumDaughter

In May 2006, we took over Worcester & Malvern Women's Aid and Wyre Forest Women’s Aid, and in April 2007, effected a full merger with Shropshire Women’s Aid to become West Mercia Women’s Aid.

West Mercia Women's Aid now employs 44 staff and 12 volunteers, running a 24-hour helpline, 3 refuges and a well-developed and expanding outreach service in each county, which includes the provision of community support to families in all three counties, group programmes and links to education and employment opportunities, as well as Independent Domestic Violence Advisor services in all three counties.

WMWA is an active member of the County Domestic Violence Forums, Safeguarding Children Boards and other relevant multi-agency groups, working to increase the safety of victims and survivors and reduce societal tolerance of domestic violence.

WMWA is a full member of the Women’s Aid Federation of England.