Anawim started over 30 years ago when two sisters of Our Lady of Charity took their mission to work with vulnerable women to the streets of Balsall Heath. They moved into an area known for prostitution, befriended the women on the street, talked to them and welcomed them back to their house.
Anawim now helps women throughout Birmingham who are involved in prostitution, offending behaviour, drug abuse and sexual exploitation to move their lives forward and reach their full potential. It provides rehabilitation, prison outreach, mental health support, family support, case management and other services, including money advice and accommodation support.
Advocating for the women, working in partnership with other agencies, working with women on the street at night, in prison, in court and in hostels, as a way of reaching out and taking the first step, are defining features of the way Anawim works.
Father Hudson’s became involved with Anawim early on and supported them by leasing the Church community centre as a base for the project, providing recruitment and line management support and arranging Management Committee meetings.
It was decided in 2014 that it was the right time for Anawim to become a charity in its own right. Both partners provided financial and professional support for this to happen and in April 2015, all staff and assets transferred to Anawim as an independent charity.
Both Our Lady of Charity and Father Hudson’s remain committed to supporting Anawim and both have places on their management board, with the Chief Executive of Father Hudson’s sitting as Chair of the board. Father Hudson’s provides invaluable human resource services to the large team of staff and volunteers, while Our Lady of Charity supports with financial management.
As their team and the number of women that they work with have grown, their facilities have extended with financial backing from the Parish, two private trusts and Our Lady of Charity. The community centre was extended, and two new buildings have been constructed providing a counselling and training centre and a residential unit for women coming out of prison. The Archdiocese of Birmingham and the Parish of St John and Martin have supported Anawim’s vital work by agreeing to new leases and new builds on their land.
To find out more about Anawim’s work, including how to volunteer or to make a donation, visit their website: www.anawim.co.uk, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0121 440 5296 to speak to a member of their team.