Birmingham City Women to partner with Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid
Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid (BSWA) have entered into a partnership with Birmingham City Women’s Football Club, allowing the charity to not only advertise and fundraise with the club, but also permit the team to become more engaged with BSWA’s day-to-day work.
BSWA are the largest, holistic provider of support services to women and children who have experienced any form of violence across the Birmingham and Solihull region, having supported 7,019 women and 4,135 children in the past year. Staff at their centres work with each woman to create an individual support plan, which can include: ‘Money Management’ and ‘Understanding your Rights’ courses, as well as self-esteem and confidence workshops. They even go as far as help with shopping, cooking and cleaning, ensuring that everyone they work with has the skills to move forward and create a successful life for themselves after they have left refuge.
In addition, the charity recently went through a rebrand, which saw their iconic water lily modernised. BSWA picked the beautiful water lily for its ability to flourish even from the murkiest water, a metaphor for the progression of the women the charity work with.
Maureen Connolly, Chief Executive of Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid, said, “We are excited to be partnering with Birmingham City Women’s Football Club at a time of change within both of our organisations. We feel they align with our values – as an organisation, we work closely with the most vulnerable women and children in our society and always celebrate their achievements, from joining us to creating their own life away from our centres. With this in mind, Birmingham City Women were the perfect fit as they too celebrate women’s achievements, working hard in a wholly male-dominated environment. We hope to see our organisation go from strength to strength thanks to this new partnership, raising our profile and awareness of the work we do.”
Birmingham City Ladies Football Club was formed in 1968 by a group of female fans who played local friendly matches until 1970. Fast-forward to May 2017 and Birmingham City Ladies featured in their second FA Women’s Cup final in five years, this time facing Manchester City Women in front of a competition record-breaking attendance of 35,271 at Wembley Stadium. This was the first time the Club has played at the traditional home of English football. Moreover, moving into 2018, the club decided it was time to rebrand, changing their name from ‘Birmingham City Ladies’ to ‘Women’. Evidently, Birmingham City Women are achieving amazing results, while simultaneously paving the way for women in sport and turning female stereotypes on their heads – another reason why BSWA are so thrilled with this partnership.
Xuandong Ren, Birmingham City FC Chief Executive and Director, said: “The charity partnership with Birmingham & Solihull Women’s Aid is a ground-breaking moment for the charity and ourselves. Their work in the communities of Birmingham and Solihull is fantastic and as a Club we want to support and raise awareness across the city.
“As a Club we are incredibly proud of the team and their achievements to date. We are fully committed to be a beacon for women’s sport both locally and nationally.”
Moving forward, BSWA hope that this link will bring more attention to their helpline and raise awareness of the issues women and children can face on a daily basis, while also working alongside the Birmingham City Women to empower women and celebrate their achievements.
For more information on Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid and how to support them please email [email protected] or call 0121 685 8687.
L-R: Lucy Quinn, Sally Insley, Marisa Ewers, Maureen Connolly, Paige Williams