DIWC provides educational, recreational, informal and social activities as well as employment training, information and advice services for disadvantaged and or/excluded women and young women from over eighty countries.
We focus on working in a multicultural way through engaging women from diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds to work, learn and integrate together through our service. The centre works in partnership with local and national organisations to promote the social development of women through encouraging active participation, leadership and citizenship in society.
DIWC provides a safe, friendly women-only environment for the active engagement of women.
We offer culturally appropriate, religiously sensitive services that enable some of the most marginalised women to be ‘allowed’ to engage.
Each member is supported through her individual journey, identifying her particular needs and aspirations to help her achieve her goals.
Our classes provide supported learning making it easier for women to engage actively; progress in their learning; build skills and confidence; integrate into the wider community; take a more active role in their family and children’s education; increase their social circles and reduce isolation. These courses are delivered by experienced staff and volunteers, many of whom are bilingual.
We achieve this through delivering formal qualifications:
- SQA ESOL Qualification – English for Speakers of Other Languages.
- NPA in Playwork and Childcare Qualification – supports women into childcare employment and/or further education and integration in society: including hands-on work placement experience in our in-house creche.
- ECDL – European Computer Driving Licence develops IT qualification/skills which support employment, communication and/or further education.
- SQA Volunteering Skills Award – at levels 3, 4 and 5: Develops transferable skills for employment and/or further education, and integration into society. Increases confidence and personal development. Provides an opportunity to try new activities and learn new skills which may lead to increased opportunities for further education and employment.
Other Educational Classes
English Conversation – can help women with useful everyday spoken English which in turn helps them to communicate with doctors, schools and other service providers.
Beginners IT – gives women who have never used a computer before an opportunity to gain skills and experience and also to keep in touch with friends and family through email and social media.
Provide a stepping stone for some of the most vulnerable women to begin engaging and also a forum within which women can come together to share issues, learning and cultural differences/expectations in a comfortable setting. Supports women to socialise with others, learn new skills and grow their confidence.
Includes Cooking, Cake Baking and Decorating, Arts & Sewing.
Bazorg over 50’s group – offers a space for isolated older women, many of whom are from BME communities to make and meet friends, socialise and learn new skills.
Macara Youth Group – 12-21 years old the chance to take part in new activities such as Healthy Eating and Exercise.
Mother and Toddler Group – provides a multicultural opportunity for women and children to mix, support each other and get advice and support through workshops such as parenting, healthy eating – provided by professionals from partner agencies.
Employment Skills Development
Women have more opportunities to increase their work-related skills and experience through provision of a range of preparatory skills, work placements and volunteer opportunities. All of this combined with the development of educational skills enables women to work towards meeting their own identified aspirations. We achieve this through delivering the following:
- Driving Theory – supports women to expand their experience, possibilities for engagement, increase participation and employment through attaining a driving licence.
- Life in the UK- can support women to gain citizenship within the UK, allowing them to gain employment and take a more active and constructive role in society.
- B1 English – can help women to gain citizenship by preparing them for the necessary standard conversational English, which then supports integration and engagement in society.
Provides volunteers, many of whom are ex-service users, with opportunities to act as role models and provide additional classroom and activity support for some of the most vulnerable women who are at risk of falling through the gap.
Our volunteers develop new skills, make friends and enhance their CVs with real-life work experience at DIWC. Their contribution to the centre is mutually beneficial, increasing their own chances of employment and enriching the community spirit of DIWC.
Advice and Information
Provide women with information on benefits, their rights, responsibilities, practical support such as form filling, ‘hand -holding’ during crisis intervention such as forced marriage, domestic violence; family crises and honour based violence ensuring they receive the support they need and are entitled to where possible in a language they understand.
- Benefits and finance advice – helps to ensure families are receiving the correct benefits.
- Advocacy – provides women with free, confidential advice and information on benefits and housing rights.
- Support and referrals – helps women to obtain the correct services or outcomes by speaking to agencies on their behalf.
- Supporting access – to appropriate agencies or services.
Sharing good practice
- Provide professionals and communities with examples of good practice in working with BME women through networking and knowledge-exchange work and speaking at conferences.
- Provide professionals and community volunteers with the skills to positively engage with isolated BME women through training.
- Provide health professionals with information and training on needs of BME women and specific issues such as mental health and harmful cultural practices.
Cultural events to celebrate festivals such as EID, Christmas, Diwali, Chinese New Year and Burns Night – bring together women from different cultures to learn from each other, raise awareness and respect for different cultures and communities.
Information sharing events – held in partnership with other organisations, over the last year we have offered opportunities for women to engage with issues such as home safety, violence against women, children and health etc.
“We welcome service users and staff from all backgrounds including those with the protected characteristics as defined in the Equality Act 2010 of: religion, race, age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and maternity or disability. We actively seek to eliminate discrimination, harassment or victimisation on any of those grounds, and to ensure that staff, visitors and service users feel safe, welcomed, valued, included and respected”.