New Gwent-wide project aims to empower women with learning difficulties

No…SH! (No Sexual Harassment) is a new peer-led project, developed by Cyfannol Women’s Aid and the national charity Volunteering Matters, and delivered as part of Cyfannol’s Horizon sexual violence services. No…SH! volunteers support women aged 16-35 across Gwent who have learning difficulties or autism, empowering them to recognise sexual harassment and abuse, speak out and access support.

Launching this week to coincide with Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week 2019, No…SH! is delivered by volunteers, many of whom have learning difficulties themselves. The project has been developed with funding from Rosa and the Justice and Equality Fund Advice and Support Programme, in response to reports of sexual harassment towards women with learning difficulties on public transport. Training and awareness raising sessions are conducted on a group and one-to-one basis in facilities throughout Gwent.

Sally Howells, Horizon Services Manager at Cyfannol Women’s Aid, said: “We are committed to supporting anyone who has experienced sexual harassment, or sexual abuse of any kind, through our Horizon services. This project shines a light on a group of women who are particularly vulnerable to this kind of abuse: it’s vital that they feel supported and empowered to say no to sexual harassment.”

Mandy Wilmot, Volunteer Manager at Volunteering Matters, added: “We know the power and potential of volunteering and social action, and we are delighted to be applying it to such an important topic. From our experience, we also know that peer-led training and workshops are hugely powerful and effective tools, especially when developed and delivered with volunteers. ”

To find out more, please visit www.cyfannol.org.uk/HorizonSVS or www.volunteeringmatters.org.uk/no-sh