By Lyndsey Dearlove, VAWG Partnership Manager at Hestia.
The UK SAYS NO MORE campaign was launched in partnership between the NO MORE campaign in the US and London charity Hestia.
As a London charity working to provide support to adults and children in crisis, Hestia benefits greatly from the support it receives from members of the public, societies, clubs and corporate companies – both large and small!
You may ask, ‘Is Hestia not funded by the government’?
The answer is, yes we are – in the most part.
The funding we receive from local government grants is used to sustain existing services and develop new services. The donations we receive go directly towards enhancing the therapeutic recovery of the adults and children who we support.
A good example of the hugely positive impact is the partnership between Hestia and a corporate company such as Dafni can make. Dafni, a partner of UK SAYS NO MORE, have been generously providing pampering sessions for women who have experienced domestic abuse and are living in our refuge accommodation.
Dafni is an innovative hair straightening brush, incorporating the most advanced hair care technologies, ensures easy, safe and fast results.
Deborah at Pure PR contacted us and let us know that Sharon the inventor of the Dafni ceramic brush would love to get involved with the UK SAYS NO MORE campaign, and that Sharon and her Sister Dafni would love to organise pampering sessions for women living in our refuges. Dafni’s vision and core values really spoke to us and we eagerly arranged the first pampering session.
Dafni’s Vision: Made with love by one woman for all women. Whether you’re a mother, student, or executive, modern women everywhere struggle to be “super women.” Society today brings more pressures, but no extra time in the day. DAFNI is dedicated to making every day a little easier, and to help us look good doing it all. This premium product is the indulgence that delivers a daily boost of confidence to transform the everyday into the extraordinary.
The culture of Dafni is defined by FIVE simple ideas:
Be Empowered – Stand up and take control. Embrace the moment
Be Human – Have fun, make mistakes, love, learn
Be Compassionate – Help women in need. Be kind
Be Amazing – Be the best possible you there is. Never stop. Never give up. Do not take NO for an answer!
Be Truly Beautiful – All women are beautiful. Be yourself. Beauty starts from within
The pamper day
The Dafni pampering day was a huge success; our residents were each given a hair make-over along with a make-up session and a manicure by Miss Beez.
— UK SAYS NO MORE (@UKSAYSNOMORE) December 1, 2016
What really made it special for us was that both Sharon and her sister Dafni took part in the session, sharing their story of how the Dafni Ceramic hairbrush was developed – which left many of the residents feeling truly inspired.
The positive impact
You may wonder why a pampering session is so empowering for women who have experienced abuse or trauma, and there are a number of psychological theories that explain why – but I think it’s easier to explain this way:
- The power of human contact – for many people, their experiences of human contact has often been aggressive, violent and at times without consent. The gentle touch of a hairdresser brushing your hair is incredibly comforting and empowering.
Alison – case worker, ‘It was such a great day and so nice for our residents to been seen as women first and not be defined by their experiences’.
- Because we’re all worth it – Spending time on our appearance – for many of us, is empowering. Some of the women who attended the pampering session had their appearance controlled by the perpetrator of abuse, and were never ‘allowed’ or were often discouraged from spending time on their appearance.
Amber said, on her return from the local shop, ‘Wow, people were looking at me as I walked down the street – but this time it wasn’t because of what I had experienced but because my hair looks so good’.
- Strength lies in Peer Support – creating opportunities for women to gather over a shared activity creates an opportunity for conversation and when women are allowed to talk – healing soon follows.
Erum said, ‘It was really great chatting to everyone and hearing from Sharon how she followed her dream, it makes me believe that I can follow mine’.
Interested in becoming a partner of UK SAYS NO MORE?
We’d love to hear from you, please get in touch with Lyndsey Dearlove, Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) Partnership Manager.
You can contact Lyndsey by email at Lyndsey.Dearlove@hestia.org or by phone at 020 7378 3170.