From jumble sales to CSR partnerships?
This chapter examines the development of partnerships with corporate bodies by one leading UK women’s charity, Women’s Aid. Drawing on the personal experience of the former CEO, a long-term feminist activist on domestic and sexual violence, the case study examines the history and context of the charity’s approach to fundraising, and the development of a strategy to capture support from corporate bodies, in the absence of sufficient statutory funding. The author examines the opportunities that this has given the charity to increase both charitable income and profile for its important work and services, but concludes that, while these achievements have enabled the charity to grow and develop its services, the challenges remain substantial, given the corporate sector’s lack of understanding of human rights issues generally, and of violence against women (VAW) and domestic violence in particular. The author also notes the challenges for smaller organizations in sustaining the expenditure of staff costs and time in their partnerships with corporates, especially given the current challenges faced by the sector to maintain state funding for core services.