My Sisters' House

Who we are:

Some of our pages are still being worked on but we should be fully functional within the next few days. So please bookmark the site and come back for the very latest information.

My Sisters' House Team

JULIE BUDGE

Founder / Chief Executive Officer

Gayle Austin Hogg

Finance Officer / Director

Faye Mills-May

Specialist DOMESTIC ABUSE Caseworker

Sylvie Collier

DIRECTOR

DIANNE SMITH

DIRECTOR

Caroline Hedicker

Holistic’s Practitioner / Director

RHODELLE INGRAM

Heart & Soul Mentor

MICHELLE BURFIELD

DOMESTIC ABUSE Recovery Keyworker

Stacey Addison

Intern: University of Chichester

Helen Downes

MSMakers Volunteer

Marion Wells

Chief Seamstress (Volunteer)

Some of the people who have helped us in the past, without whom, we would not be where we are today

KEZ BRIDGER

FORMER DIRECTOR

Kes now runs Bognorphenia

Georgia

First upcycled staff

clair

First upcycled staff

Holly Tullet

APPRENTICE UPCYCLE WORKER,

Holly is now at University studying textile design

Birdy Davenport

SHINE & Heart & Soul Facilitator

Annabell Alexander

Former Chair and Director
Shine and Mind Works Facilitator

Joanne Webb

FORMER DIRECTOR

Jo now runs her own business in Arundel

JADE SHERWELL

APPRENTICE

Vicky Andrew

Former Director

OUR ETHOS

We aim to support a population of vulnerable women who are characterised by a range of issues including histories of physical , emotional and sexual abuse, drug and alcohol addiction, trauma, and mental health problems.

We also support women who may be having a difficult time at one point in their lives – a recent loss such as bereavement, suffering poverty from unemployment, relationship breakdown, a victim of crime, accident or illness/disability.

We offer practical, emotional, and therapeutic support to clients in tailor-made interventions that aim to address a range of underlying issues.

Women value our safe, women-only space and the set of supportive relationships with workers and peers they are able to build here. It integrates the best features of personalisation - supporting women to get their lives back on track; yet it works through collective action - using a mixture of peer support, volunteering and professional support.

 

My Sisters' House

Why a women's Centre ?

Women’s Centres are not new – there are 72 in the UK , some like Brighton Women’s Centre have been running 40 years.

We wanted West Sussex to have one and so set it up in 2014. We have adopted the Women Centred Working way of working: This is an evidenced based initiative to encourage the design and delivery of more effective services for women who are facing multiple disadvantages. Women centred ways of working can get to the root causes of complex problems by integrating and tailoring services around women’s specific needs. There is powerful evidence of the effectiveness of this approach from existing projects in local communities. Women Centred Working has been set up to share good practice, change thinking and promote effective, women centred approaches on a wider national basis. Our approach is to provide services in a women centred way. They are:

  • safe, supportive and community-based
  • holistic and multi-agency
  • tailored around the needs of individuals
  • co-produced along with service users
  • effective, outcome-focused and preventative
  • able to demonstrate evidence of cost-effectiveness

Since opening our first drop-in, in June 2015 we have supported 135 women. We work with any women with any issue. To-date; 68% of our cases have had domestic abuse / abuse in their background either from families as a child or past/ present partners. It is essential that every woman who begins a journey with us should be supported in a consistent way. This ensures safeguarding is paramount from the first meeting onward with clear procedures in respect of confidentiality and a clear assessment. At the centre of our contact - a clear, equal pathway of our provision, detailed records and case management and review.

Our original mission was to open one FULLY OPERATIONAL CENTRE offering counselling, coaching, training and IAG. But having piloted the drop-in we realise how successful the model is and taking into account local needs, local views and user led we recognise the values:

  • Very accessible / very visible
  • Comfortable , inviting, warm space not to big or threatening
  • Low cost - Supported by local volunteers
  • Tapping into local expertise & organisations

Our vision is thus to develop similar drop-in venues in Chichester and Littlehampton.


What difference do we want to make?

We want women to have confidence and courage, but more than that:

Connection: that women feel included, not alone or isolated

  • Relationships: their relationships are rich, positive, rewarding, trusting and respectful
  • Resilience and Emotional Well Being: they can manage their state of mind and take responsibility for how they feel
  • Meaningful Experiences: that what they experience daily makes sense and allows them to flourish
  • Purpose and Contribution: that they know that what they do matters
  • Self-efficacy and Goal Realisation: they have a belief in their abilities, skills and purpose.
  • Love; The Self Variety.
  • Empowerment: that the path they choose is right for them