Women’s Fund

About the Women’s Fund

The Women’s Fund was established in 1999 by Dame Margaret Barbour, with an initial donation of £250,000 from the Barbour trust. Dame Margaret Barbour had a vision that the Women’s Fund could become a collective pool for women to support other women in our region.

Together, through the Women’s Fund we can help women to feel safe, supported and confident when confronted by abuse, discrimination and a lack of opportunities. The fund supports women only projects throughout Tyne & Wear and Northumberland.

In response to the difficult times in the sector when women’s only services are under financial pressure, we are seeking to increase this permanent fund by a further £300,000 over 5 years so that we can support more local women to achieve their potential now and in the future. Anyone can donate to the fund whether it’s a gift of £5 or £500,000, together we can make a difference to the lives of women in our region.

To donate to the Women’s Fund please click here:

Click here to download a standing order form.

Click here to download a flyer about our Women’s Fund.



Recent grants

Aspire 2 B received a grant of £2,000 from the Women’s Fund to support Black Minority Ethnic women who suffer from urban and/or rural isolation in Blyth, Alnwick and Berwick.

The Women’s Fund responds to a wide range of women’s issues. In 2012 the Women’s Fund awarded a grant of £1,500 to Gateshead Crossroad Carers to assist with their Young Carer’s programme. The organisation worked directly with the mothers of young carers so that they could lead a more independent life and reduce their dependence on the family.

Lynn Readman, Young Carers Manager at Crossroads Care Gateshead said:

“The Women’s Fund addresses vital issues in our community, and it was inspiring to see over 300 women unite to support a common cause to empower local women. A grant of £1,500 in 2012 was able to help 28 individual families through our young carers programme, and collectively we can all help to make a difference to women in our community by supporting the Women’s Fund.”


Summer 13 082

Crossroads Care for Young People received a grant of £1,500 in November 2012.


Other projects that have received funding from the Women’s Fund include:


The Hindu Nari Sangh

The Hindu Nari Sangh provides traditional Indian and Bollywood dance classes, celebrations for Hindu festivals and multi-cultural events and activities for women and children living in South Tyneside and Newcastle upon Tyne. It brings together women from Indian, Chinese, Middle Eastern, African and local communities, and currently has a regular group of 30 aged five to 18 years.




Daybreak, Hexham

Learning disabled women from across our region experience particular challenges.  A grant from the Women’s Fund enabled learning disabled individuals in Hexham to participate in sport and to learn about cooking and entertaining as part of a ‘Come Dine With Me’ style event.




Sunderland Women’s Centre

A grant from the Women’s Fund enabled Sunderland Women’s Centre to to continue its programme of  training courses under the theme of ‘Healthy Living.’  The programme comprises three separate courses in confidence building, women’s health and stress management.