The Women of the Year Foundation was established in 2001 with the aim of helping women to fulfil their potential and become, in their own context, future ‘Women of the Year’. The Foundation is funded by donations and fundraising initiatives by those involved in the annual Lunch.
Since 2001, we have supported a number of disadvantaged women both in the UK and abroad to start over and improve their lives either through retraining or in business. The people and projects we have funded are diverse and include:
- A harp therapy course for a talented harpist who uses music for healing in hospices, hospitals and in sport
- Training, spinning equipment and business start up funding for a farmer to develop a co-operative spinning business using wool from her flock of rare sheep
- Looms and textiles for a women’s co-operative in India, and training to weave fabrics, to help the women to break out of the poverty trap
- Kickstart funding for an accessories business started by two single mothers which has since won awards and high profile contracts
- Training women from townships in South Africa in the preparation of take-away food, giving them the chance of financial independence
- Grants for young women participating in The Prince’s Trust’s programmes
- Microfinance for groups of women setting up small businesses in the East End of London
- A computer to enable a registered homeless person to study on a network training course
- Computer equipment for a training facility in Ethiopia, to enable young women to acquire computer skills and gain employment.