Collaborative grant making to support women with financial, employability and confidence building support

The Women’s Financial Empowerment Fund (WFEF) began in 2023 as a crucial response to close the gaps in provision for women on low incomes, which have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and the current cost-of-living crisis. 

Working in partnership with 17 local delivery organisations, many of them Smallwood’s valued Community Grant Partners, the fund places lived experience at the heart of the programme. It focuses on underserved geographical communities across many areas of the UK, disadvantaged by intersecting issues. Through this programme, women have had access to individual grants, a skill building programme and employability support. 

Support for the women’s sector and their beneficiaries is vital. The Women’s Financial Empowerment Fund provides both.

What do some of the women and organisations benefiting from this fund have to say?

“I was in a part-time night shift job that was affecting my health and confidence. It also wasn’t covering my standard bills such as rent and council tax. Thanks to the 1:1 support from Lolita, I have changed employment to something more suitable. The support with my debts has made things more manageable and has really helped with my mental health.  It’s a long road ahead, but I feel lighter and hopeful towards the future now. Eternally grateful for the support received from Staffordshire Women’s Aid. Many thanks.” –  Individual woman accessing the programme.

“We were able to break down the financial barriers the service user was faced with and as a result increase her confidence, self-esteem and improve her mental health. We supported her by negotiating with her creditors and agreeing an affordable payment plan. We also provided her with the tools to manage her finances and household budget. With the support she of the job market. “ was able to secure employment after many years out.” – Support worker from one of our partner organisations running this programme. 

You can learn more about the work of this fund here: 

Scroll to Top