Hull Sisters is a non-profit organisation dedicated to supporting Black and minority ethnic women who are dealing with human rights issues – including violence and abuse, racism and discrimination, immigration, FGM, trafficking, poverty and poor health. Since 2012, we’ve provided a safe space that is tailored to the specialist needs of isolated women in Hull.
At the moment we’re supporting 485 women and their children. Many women come to us having been abused in their homes, and most face racism and discrimination on a daily basis.
We have remained in our building for the past seven years, but now we have been given us an eviction notice to leave by the end of this month.
Hull City Council is offering us a building on hard terms and conditions, and has admitted it has no strategy to support BAME women. Now they're saying we have to pay £15,000 per year to rent the building without including gas, electric, water and council tax. This is too much for us, we cannot afford this rent. Despite public pressure the council is not listening to us, they are cheating us. They have no sympathy or empathy towards BME women.
We need a permanent roof over our heads to be able to help women and children who rely on us. Our future is now uncertain and despite many empty buildings available in the area, we haven't been offered any long-term solutions. They are not listening to our needs.
We created this fund to help us raise money ahead of our eviction, and to put pressure on the council to find an appropriate shelter.
* £15,000 would cover one year's rent in a temporary disused building
* £160,000 would allow us to buy the building and secure a permanent home for Hull Sisters. These are the prices Hull City Council are giving to us.
We call on you to please like and share our cause and post supportive comments to build up that pressure. We have continuously been ignored by all.
Why should you support Hull Sisters?
We have been operating on limited funding since we started in 2012. We’ve done the best we can with what money is available from local funders to support to Black and minority ethnic women’s services. We offer free ESOL language classes (levels I-3), sewing and cooking classes, employability, interview and CV writing classes, IT and maths classes, henna painting, yoga, and one-to-one support sessions. We also have women-only get togethers and outdoor drips.
The pandemic has worsened the living situations of many of the women in our community and we’ve become more of a lifeline than ever. In our space these women can heal from their experiences alongside others who understand.
Mainstream services don't take into account the specific needs of Black and minority ethnic women. At Hull Sisters we cater to those needs and without a permanent building, we will struggle to continue doing so.
That's why we're calling for your support and solidarity – sharing our story will help us spread the message that the needs of services led 'by and for' Black and minority ethnic women MATTER.
When we spoke to the BBC to highlight our current situation, they also drew attention to the fact that Hull City Council do not have a strategy to support BAME women. This needs to change and we're so grateful for any help in making that happen.
* Our website
* Our Facebook page
* Link to the BBC reporting on our eviction notice
- Amy Beddows
- Dee Sheehan
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