Women's Centre for Health Matters
Improving women’s health and wellbeing in ACT.
Women’s Centre for Health Matters is a community-based non-profit organisation working in the ACT region of Australia, focussing on the ‘social determinants of health’.
Funds raised: $29,310
WCHM pitched in Canberra on the 21st September and raised $28,310 that will support a new sustainable micro-finance facility (Assistance Beyond Crisis), which has been developed in response to the researched needs of local women who have escaped domestic violence situations. The facility will provide victims with a one-off no interest loan to establish short-term financial stability and access to financial counselling.
A woman’s decision on whether or not to leave a violent relationship should not be influenced by financial factors, but too often it is. Even having a good job is not enough to ensure financial stability outside of the relationship, especially for mothers and carers. Often by having a job, these women are excluded from most benefits, but after paying for housing and living costs there’s nothing left on a single income. This creates a silent type of financial distress and disadvantage forcing some women to consider moving back to their previous relationship and risk homelessness. The cycle continues.
Supported by the funding raised at TFN Live Canberra, the Women’s Centre for Health Matters has been able to issue flexible, interest-free loans to women who have experienced domestic violence from their Assistance Beyond Crisis fund. This has helped them get through hard times and ensure they don’t resort to risky lenders or return to their previous relationships if it’s not a safe decision. And, to date, they have all been paid back creating a sustainable model. To date, over $75,000 has been lent out to vulnerable women providing timely support. Below is a short story about how this loan helped one woman in need.
“One woman had moved into a rental property with her children after leaving domestic violence and had been living there for some time without basic furniture because she was unable to afford household items. The loan allowed her to purchase several appliances and a household furniture package, and this has provided comfort for her family and a sense for the whole family of returning to some normality after a very stressful period in their lives.” – Marcia Williams, Chief Executive Officer
Read their Impact Report.