Elderly woman sitting near a doorLuton All Women’s Centre (LAWC) has been supporting women and girls living in Luton and Bedfordshire since the early 1990s. Offering a wide-range of advisory, information, practical and holistic support services, our aim is to challenge gender inequality and empower women and girls to enjoy lives that are safer, healthier and fairer.

Within our safe, women-only space, situated in central Luton, we welcome all women, regardless of age, disability, gender, marital status, race, belief or sexuality. Many of the women and girls we support have complex or multiple support needs – and frequently these have been caused by traumatic experiences such as domestic abuse, violence, coercion, harmful practices or sexual exploitation.

Tackling these (and other issues that place women at a disadvantage in our society), our services are based around the following principles:

Safety

We place high value on every women and girl’s right to live their life free from violence and abuse. Through our specialist Domestic Abuse and Harmful Practices services, we not only provide 1-1 and group support for those affected but also carry out preventative work across our community (for instance via educational activities in schools and colleges plus training programmes for professionals and other agencies).

Health and wellbeing 

We’re helping women whose health and wellbeing have been adversely affected by traumatic experiences in their lives to improve both their physical and mental health. We offer professional and peer-led support, structured group sessions, wellbeing workshops, professional counselling, exercise classes, health drop-in sessions and a range of opportunities for recreational/ social activities.

Woman at work using a laptopImproving prospects 

We’re empowering women to lead independent lives, by facilitating access to specialist advice (e.g. debt management), providing education and key skills development activities (e.g. confidence building and employability skills), and support women to access to meaningful volunteering/ employment opportunities.

Progressing gender equality 

We’re aiming to bring a sea change across our region in relation to the issues and root causes of inequality and disadvantage among women and girls. Working in partnership with many other local organisations and networks, we’re raising awareness of these issues, organising and participating in relevant events or campaigns, collaborating on projects, and playing our part in influencing local policy wherever it has a gendered impact.

At Luton All Women’s Centre, our range of services is always evolving.

To find out more, or make a suggestion about how we might empower and support women/ girls in your part of the town, please contact us.