Our values define who we are as an organisation and shape our organisational behaviour and decision-making. They influence our every action and interaction at Women’s Aid, when dealing with both internal and external contacts. All staff are expected to live these values on a day to day basis, and they should be reflected across our business planning and daily practices.
Our values underpin our strategy and business plans. They are part of the standards against which people’s performance is appraised, and what we look for when recruiting. These values drive our decision making and our communications.
At Women’s Aid we recognise that while domestic abuse can be experienced by a range of people, it is gendered and is most frequently perpetrated against women by male perpetrators. We recognise that domestic abuse happens within the context of patriarchy and we use our platform to challenge this.
We are a feminist organisation and recognise that sex and gender based oppression intersects with other systems of oppression. Power and control underpin all forms of oppression, and we recognise the need to recognise our own privilege to be able to challenge oppression as a movement of women. We are proud to work with sister organisations whose mission is to end other forms of oppression.
Women’s Aid exists to end domestic abuse by:
- Representing our national membership, which provides domestic abuse services to survivors around the country.
- Lobbying and campaigning to bring about system changes and improve responses to survivors’ needs.
- Directly supporting survivors through our national support services.
We place survivors at the heart of everything we do. This means that:
- We promote and deliver a needs led and strength based response to survivors.
- We provide a platform for survivors’ voices to be heard.
- To understand the diversity of survivors’ needs and to take an intersectional approach, we proactively seek out voices and experiences that are not present in our organisation.
Women’s Aid exists for all women who have survived domestic abuse and our members who support them. As a national charity we have an important role to play in representing diversity. We understand that abuse and lack of access to support is compounded by racism, homophobia and disability. We work to promote and deliver safe and inclusive services. We follow the principle of “nothing about us without us” and work with sister organisations to make this a reality. As a federation, we work with and represent a diverse membership body that directly support thousands of women across England. We value the expertise of the survivors we work for – we value the specialisms that our members represent – and know that diversity makes us stronger and more effective as an organisation.
We want all those we work with – survivors, colleagues, members and sister organisations – to fulfil their potential. We provide opportunities, work collaboratively and share our platform. We believe in the strengths of survivors, creating and promoting tools and services that work for survivors, led by the expertise of survivors. We advocate for dedicated spaces for BME women, LBT women and disabled women, who we know have different experiences of domestic abuse and recognise our power and privilege as a majority white and able-bodied work force. We are open and honest – we learn from mistakes and celebrate our progress.
It is vital that Women’s Aid is sustainable so that we are there for survivors and our members until all women and children are safe. We have a unique place within our federation and will act to ensure that we and our member organisations can keep working and making a difference for years to come. Fundraising and sustainability must be considered in every aspect of our work. We are experts in our field, and sector leaders in research and evaluation. We are enduring.