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Our approach is to put the needs of each survivor at the centre of our activities so we can offer programmes that are relevant and able to help remove the barriers to sustainable freedom.


Over the years, we’ve brought people, organisations, and the government together to better understand survivors’ needs and to design programmes that will help them to achieve a better future.


Our programmes help participants build confidence, self-worth, and resilience. They also offer tangible skills  needed for employment to support each woman on her journey to independence. Lives not as victims or even as survivors, but as important members of society.


So far, we’ve helped hundreds of women gain valuable life-changing education and employment skills and experience across various sectors, from social care to health, retail to finance, fashion, hospitality, light industry and academics.

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"Finally, I can move forward"


To read about how we’ve helped individual women achieve their goals, select their names below be inspired by their stories:


Amie had always wanted to work in the hotel and hospitality industry, and she was keen to expand her customer service experience. Working with her Sophie Hayes Foundation Coach, she completed a six weeks work experience placement with an international hotel chain. In her placement, she learnt all aspects of running a front desk and the many other skills required to work in a team. By the finish, she had obtained a Certificate of Completion in the Adult Learning Programme. "I really loved this placement; the opportunity was different but specific to what I wanted to do."


Grace knew she was uncomfortable being indoors. She knew she felt free with the sun on her face and the feeling of life around her. It reminded her of her home. We found Grace an outdoor volunteering role, where she worked with others and had the chance to plant and sow on a local allotment. The role gave Grace the confidence to relate to others and bond with a community that didn't know her story but readily embraced her zest for life.


Maisie realised working with others would give her the experience she needed beyond education. Her placement with a national retailer gave her self-confidence and essential experience for her CV. "I have been looking for work for such a long time. I had no experience, and I realised that sometimes having qualifications isn't enough. I am grateful for the opportunity to have this employment. It has given me new skills and experience, and I know I will now be able to progress to bigger and better things."


Despite Covid-19, Tina passed her Functional Skills & Health & Social Care - Level II course with distinction. "I was always nervous about going to College. Having coaching with Sophie Hayes Foundation helped me to overcome that fear. At first, not having the actual support of your tutor because of Covid was a challenge, but I stuck with it, doing work online, and I am so happy that I passed. It proves that all the effort has been worthwhile."


Now free, Zara wanted to help others and was interested in Human Rights. Ultimately, she would like to be a lawyer. Through Sophie Hayes Foundation, she secured a placement in a human rights charity, where she researched other charities to identify potential collaborations and gain knowledge of the sector. "I learned how to work as part of a team, conduct essential research and learn the soft skill of listening to others."


Esta knew her passion was fashion, even though her sense of style had been eliminated in her life of abuse and violence. However, despite her trauma, she still had a love for the clothing industry. Our coaching gave her the confidence to apply for a role at a major fashion store. The position restored her sense of style and showed her how to advise customers on theirs.

Learn more about our programme and get involved today.