It’s hard to believe that a full year has passed and the Women Leaders South West (WLSW) programme has ended. We have recently returned from a residency where we finally met the other 14 Associates and partners involved in the project and it was clear that this is just the beginning.
Being an Associate on the programme has meant that we have had time and space to apply our passions to what really matters including how we support more women to tap into their power, creativity and a greater access to art and culture. It became clear on the residency that, among our cohort of women with differing life challenges, we could be allies for each other as we strive to make meaningful change.
We have learnt a lot while developing the concept of Grace The Space. We are fortunately now in a place where we have secured funding and gathered some amazing partners as this phase of the project comes to fruition. We will be working with women’s groups predominantly in the Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole area, facilitating creative walking events and participating in Green Space Dark Skies in June. We are currently designing our logo and establishing an online presence so do look out for that and please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.
Recent highlights for us have been: stepping on the stage at the Southbank Centre, London for the Women and Power day at the WOW Festival; being invited as panel members at Barnfest at the Brewhouse Theatre, Taunton alongside fellow Associates Abby, Vandna and Adie where we debated the future of arts in the South West and how we can learn from communities about purposeful project delivery.
Over the next six months we will continue our work on Grace the Space, even while Tash is signing off for a few months to have a baby!
It’s hard to put into a sentence what we have learned about women in leadership but, if we had to try to summarise, it would be focused on our individual self-belief that we can effect change but that this can only be sustainable when we bring others up the mountain with us.
Tash and Ruth