So, what difference do the Awards make?
The Women on the Move Awards celebrate inspirational leadership from migrant and refugee women who help others integrate into and contribute to UK society. The awards are both a way to support the women who do this important work, and also a vehicle for the partnership of organisations who deliver them to change the public narrative about what migrants and refugees bring to the UK.
More than just a one night event, the awards and fellowship make an ongoing and lasting difference to the winners. The women gain recognition for their work and raise their profile through the media attention they gain. A fellowship for the winners provides access to high quality leadership development, networking opportunities and financial support to enable these women to develop their work. This includes pro bono leadership training and mentoring from organisations such as The Forum, networking events, speaking and development opportunities, and individual/group support for winners, shortlisted candidates and nominees. In 2014 we began to develop a fellowship network for the award winners, exceptional nominees and shortlisted candidates, to support each other, develop as leaders and continue to access new resources.
This network of extraordinary migrant and refugee women, and their supporters is being strengthened and developed through networking events. The Awards has a committee of ‘champions’ who guide and promote the work. These include Kirsteen Tait, a Young Foundation Fellow who works on a project for young undocumented migrants for Paul Hamlyn Foundation and Fiona Dawe, CBE, who is an advisor to Paul Hamlyn Foundation and the Clore Social Leadership Programme. We are working to expand this network of supporters to include individuals from the corporate world and other ‘unusual suspects’ who can help us promote and develop the work of refugee and migrant women in the UK.
The Women on the Move Awards ceremony is increasingly becoming a high profile public event and the Awards fellowship a sought-after network linked to the corporate and public sector, which helps its members to become stronger leaders by improving their skills and giving them access to new worlds. Through conversations with winners and nominees of the Awards this year we know that women from refugee and migrant backgrounds working at the grassroots are eager for platforms to showcase their work and for networks in which they can develop their capacities and gain peer support.
Women On the Move in the press…..
The homeless refugee speaking out for female asylum seekers - The Guardian, Melissa Jun Rowley
Eritrean who fled to UK wins award for helping other refugees - The Guardian, Mark Tran
Somali Who Overcame Horrors To Fight For Refugees Named Woman Of The Year - Huffington Post, Charlotte Alfred
Refugees to take centre-stage at women’s festival on the Southbank - Evening Standard, Miranda Byrant
The Story Of These Women Will Inspire You - Look Magazine, Hannah Banks-Walker
Seeking liberation, seeking comfort: women migrants in the UK - Open Democracy, Chè Ramsden
Big Wins For Refugee Women At WOMA16 - The Toolbox, Madison Salters
Refugee And FGM Campaigner Wins Woman Of The Year Award - The Voice, Rykesha Hudson
We can make real changes, says activist rabbi - Jewish Chronicle
Q and A with Zrinka bralo – The WOW Festival Blog
Woman Of the World Festival – t! Magazine, Cristina Ferrauti
Somali woman from Manchester named woman of year for work with asylum seekers - The Northern Quota, David Porter