Agenda

Project description

Agenda, the alliance for women and girls at risk, is working to build a society where women and girls are able to live their lives free from inequality, poverty and violence. We campaign for women and girls facing abuse, poverty, poor mental health, addiction and homelessness to get the support and protection they need. We work to get systems and services transformed, to raise awareness across sectors and to promote public and political understanding of the lives of women and girls facing multiple disadvantage.

Lankelly Chase is supporting Agenda with core funding enabling us to carry out our work to influence policy and practice affecting women and girls experiencing multiple disadvantage.

 Activities

We bring together organisations, including our 80+ members, to share learning and best practice. We promote gendered working and encourage other organisations to have an interest in and advocate for women and girls at risk.

We undertake policy work and commission research to build the evidence base on women and girls at risk. We campaign for government commitment to women and girls at risk, advocating for women across a range of policy areas, and have recently had a particular focus on mental health whilst also taking opportunities to influence as they arise.

Learning so far

Our reports have included:

Hidden Hurt, violence, abuse and disadvantage in the lives of women

Joining the Dots, the combined burden of violence, abuse and poverty

Women’s needs in mental health services, a response to an FOI request

The use of restraint on women and girls in mental health units, a response to an FOI request

Double Disadvantage, the experiences of black, Asian and minority ethnic women in the criminal justice system

Mapping the Maze, services for women experiencing multiple disadvantage in England and Wales

We are currently producing a short report, funded by Lankelly Chase, looking at systems change with a gendered lens. This will set out how systems fail to work for women and girls and articulate what the consequences of this are for women, communities and society. It will produce a series of recommendations for what should happen to improve the situation.

System behaviours

Agenda recognises that perspective is important in creating lasting change, requiring commitment and activity in a range of areas. That is why we bring together organisations, including our 80+ members, and policy makers from across sectors, all with different strengths and expertise, to work in partnership to drive forward positive change for women and girls.

We believe in the power of women with lived experience, building on their strength and amplifying their voices, to ensure they are heard and are central to creating change.

We encourage women and our members to participate in what we do, valuing their dialogue on the issues, and working alongside them to hold decision-makers to account to help build a more effective system.

Tensions

Women experiencing multiple disadvantage face a range of overlapping and interconnected challenges. But systems, at both a national and local level, and services, continue to be fragmented and lack a gender focus. Our challenge is to navigate the siloes while keeping focus on the interlinked nature of the issues women and girls specifically face.

You can find media coverage of Agenda here: https://weareagenda.org/media-coverage/

For more about what we are learning through the Knowledge Action Inquiry click here.