2021-2022 Annual Impact Report Published

We are delighted to share our 2021-2022 Annual Impact Report with you, providing detailed information about FTWW’s work, achievements, and finances during the 12 months from April 2021 to March 2022. The year saw some fantastic work by our staff and volunteers, ensuring that female health has the attention it deserves in Wales and our voices are heard here and beyond. We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has given their time, and supported us, during what has continued to be a challenging time for so many. We truly appreciate you! Find the English and Welsh…

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Rachel is smiling as she stands in front of the Welsh Charity Awards banner, being presented with her award.

Rachel is Young Volunteer of The Year

We are so proud of FTWW Volunteer, Rachel Joseph, who has been named ‘Young Volunteer of the Year’ Award at WCVA’s Welsh Charity Awards. Rachel does so much for FTWW, and for endometriosis patients across Wales, and we would be lost without her. She picked up her well-deserved award at the ITV Wales studios – check out their article detailing more about her achievements.  Diolch yn fawr iawn, Rachel – our powerhouse! 

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Disability History Month – Taskforce representation

16 November – 16 December is Disability History Month, and this year’s theme is Disability, Health and Well Being. The Covid Pandemic has demonstrated across the UK and around the world just how fragile the Rights disabled people have secured for themselves are, and this was of course highlighted in the Locked Out report. We are pleased therefore to continue our representation on Welsh Government’s co-produced Disability Rights Taskforce, representing members across a number of working groups – including Independent Living: Health and Wellbeing, which held its first meeting on 23 November and was Chaired by our very own trustee, Willow. 

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Jane Hutt MS

Period Proud – Jane Hutt MS thanks FTWW

Heledd Fychan MS led a short debate about enshrining the strategy on period poverty in legislation, like the Scottish Government’s Period Products (Free Provision) Act 2021. The Minister for Social Justice announced a plan for eliminating period poverty and achieving period dignity for all by 2027 was coming soon. The minister also thanked campaigners and organisations who have supported the work, including FTWW. You can read the full transcript of the debate, here: https://record.assembly.wales/Plenary/13044#A75684

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BBC Walescast – FTWW Joins Women’s Health Takeover

This month, FTWW’s Engagement Officer, Dee, appeared on BBC Wales News Walescast Women’s Health takeover.  Hosted by BBC Wales News Health Reporter Jenny Rees, Dee was delighted to join Mrs Julie Cornish, who heads up Wales’ first Pelvic Health Hub at Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, and Dr Amara Naseem from Muslim Doctors Cymru to discuss health inequalities in Wales, and how they impact women, girls and those assigned female at birth.   This programme ties in with BBC Wales’s coverage of the concerns raised by the #WomensHealthWales Coalition, which is co-chaired by FTWW and British Heart Foundation Cymru,…

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Disability Rights Taskforce

As part of the work of the Ministerial Disability Rights Taskforce, two working groups met this month, ‘Understanding and Embedding the Social Model of Disability’, and ‘Access to Services’.  At FTWW, we know that widespread understanding and usage of the social model would help many of our members living with chronic health conditions feel better equipped to ensure their rights are upheld. Meanwhile, key points raised at the ‘Access to Services’ group included the need for inclusivity in all things, starting with businesses’ accessibility information. For more information on the Disability Rights working groups, including opportunities to get involved, please…

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Lara and Lisa presenting at the WMN Conference

Wales Menopause Network Conference

Da iawn and diolch to FTWW Menopause champions Lara Morris (left) and Lisa Nicholls for speaking about their patient experiences at the Wales Menopause Network inaugural conference on Saturday. FTWW’s Engagement Officer, Dee, also posed questions from our members to clinicians Dr Nadia Hikary-Bhal and Dr Jayne Forrester-Paton – although that session had to be cut short, Nadia and Jayne have kindly offered to respond to all of the questions, so we will be able to share that information with you soon. There were some really great discussions about research being planned in Wales which will look at menopause and longevity,…

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FTWW Supports Social Justice

FTWW is delighted to offer support to the Welsh Government’s Social Justice portfolio, particularly at this time the Ministerial Disability Rights Taskforce.   A number of our volunteers will be on Working Groups, including Health & Wellbeing, Embedding the Social Model, and Access to Services. We are pleased to be supporting our trustee, Willow Holloway, herself a disabled woman, to take up the role of co-Chair of the Health & Wellbeing working group.  This work is particularly vital at a time when many disabled people are likely to be experiencing pronounced hardship in the face of the rising cost of living…

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Lisa Nicholls after finishing her Ultra Marathon

Congratulations, Lisa! We are ULTRA proud of you!

FTWW’s Menopause Lead, Lisa Nicholls (pictured), has long supported our members experiencing menopause-related issues, and also represented FTWW in the media and high level meetings, including the Westminster APPG on Menopause and the All Wales Planned Gynaecology Board Task & Finish Group for Menopause. She does so much in her volunteering for us, but the saying ‘going the extra mile’ doesn’t quite do it justice – she recently took part in a gruelling 50-mile Ultra Marathon, over the Brecon Beacons, to raise vital funds for FTWW.  If you’re as impressed with Lisa’s efforts as we are, please do consider making a…

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UK Health Radio’s Autistic Voices welcomes Willow

FTWW Trustee, Willow Holloway, recently featured on UK Health Radio’s Autistic Voices programme, hosted by Evalynne Charmer. Willow told Evalynne about her roles with FTWW, Autistic UK, the Autistic Women’s Empowerment Project, and Disability Wales, and about her lived experience as a late-diagnosed autistic woman. Tune in here.

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an IUD (coil) lies on a blue, pink and yellow background

ITV Wales News Covers Contraception Delays

There are concerns women are at risk of unwanted pregnancies in some parts of Wales due to “significant” delays within sexual health services, as reported by ITV Wales.  FTWW told ITV News that it is “vital” that women are able to access the treatment they need “as soon as possible”. “’It’s important to realise that these devices can be used both for contraception and relief of symptoms from gynaecological health conditions. Issues like pelvic pain and heavy bleeding can have a really significant and detrimental impact on women’s lives and we know that many of those affected can find it…

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Welsh Women’s Awards – Women Support Group of the Year

We are delighted to tell you that FTWW have won ‘Women Support Group of the Year’ at the The Welsh Women’s Awards!   Before we became a registered charity, we started out as a Facebook group, which is still going strong today. We welcome those looking for peer support, and also offer proactive involvement opportunities to help shape Welsh Government and NHS policies and services.   We are delighted to have been recognised with this award, and dedicate it to all of our volunteers and members.   Our work aims to achieve equality in healthcare for women and those assigned…

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A group of women standing together at the launch of the feminist scorecard

Gender Health Inequality Gets a Red Card in Feminist Scorecard

FTWW was pleased to be amongst a number of charities asked by WEN Wales and Oxfam Cymru to contribute insights to their Feminist Scorecard for 2022. The Scorecard aims to provide a series of snapshots of Welsh Government’s performance in six key areas for women’s equality in Wales and this year’s version illustrated that much needs to be done if Wales is to be a feminist nation, with FTWW volunteer, Beth, leading discussion on health inequalities at the Scorecard’s Community Launch on July 13th. Despite the ‘red card’ for health equality, FTWW is optimistic that a growing focus on women’s health…

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Welsh Government Publishes its Quality Statement for Women and Girls’ Health

Tuesday, 5th July saw the Welsh Government publish its Quality Statement for Women & Girls’ Health which, we’re pleased to say, very much echoes the report published in May by the #WomensHealthWales Coalition, co-chaired by FTWW and British Heart Foundation Cymru. The Welsh Government’s Quality Statement is designed to provide all 7 health boards in Wales with its expectations of what good quality health services for women and girls should look like.  Over the summer, the Welsh Government will embark on a range of engagement activities to co-produce a 10-year ‘action plan’ to achieve those expectations. We will keep you posted on how you…

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Women’s Health Plan for Wales Launched by Third Sector Coalition

A report published by a coalition of charities and health organisations, on International Day of Action for Women’s Health, says women in Wales have poorer health outcomes than men and urgent action is needed to ensure they receive equal care and treatment.  Leading the Women’s Health Wales coalition of over sixty charities, UK-wide umbrella organisations, Royal Colleges and patient representatives, British Heart Foundation BHF Cymru and Fair Treatment for the Women of Wales (FTWW) have today [Saturday 28th May 2022] published a Quality Statement which calls on Welsh Government to improve healthcare for women, girls and those assigned female at…

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presenter Alex, who has long dark straight hair and is wearing a pink jumper, speaks to Endometriosis specialist Richard Penketh, who is wearing green clinical scrubs. He is showing her endometriosis tissue on a laptop screen

ITV Wales This Week: Living In Pain – documentary shines spotlight on Endometriosis crisis in Wales

                      A number of FTWW volunteers and supporters featured in Alexandra Hartley’s documentary for ITV Wales This Week: Living In Pain, which covered the issues facing endometriosis patients in Wales – including a lack of specialists and access to them, long waiting times for surgery, and the average diagnosis time of nine years – the longest in all of the home nations.  Dee, FTWW’s Engagement Officer, was interviewed for the programme and had this to say, ‘We need urgent intervention from Welsh Government…If you put ten of your female friends or…

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Behind the Health Statistic

Adenomyosis Awareness Month: Behind the Health Statistic

FTWW Volunteer, Lara, hosts the Women’s Health Series of Cardiff University’s ‘Behind the Health Statistic’, and the second episode focuses on Adenomyosis – timely as April is Adenomyosis Awareness Month! Our Engagement Officer, Dee, shares her experiences of the condition, which occurs when the tissue that normally lines the uterus (endometrial tissue) grows into the muscular wall of the uterus. We’re sharing a link to Spotify, but you can find the episode – and the series – on all major podcast platforms.

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Endometriosis Nurses stand with the Health Minister and Chief Nursing Officer inside the Senedd

FTWW’s Volunteers Help to Deliver Training to Wales’s Endometriosis Nurses

  Thursday 17th and Friday 18th March proved to be incredibly exciting for FTWW, with 18 of our volunteers participating in a 2-day training event for Wales’s new endometriosis nurses.  Funded by the Welsh Government and recently appointed by every health board, the nurses will support patients with suspected and confirmed endometriosis as they navigate care between primary (GP) and secondary (gynaecologist) care. For many patients, this will involve pain management, pelvic physiotherapy, and waiting for what can be a long time to access surgery. Our volunteers were pleased to share their experiences as well as give the nurses the opportunity…

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A screengrab from the online meeting of FTWW, BHF and the Senedd's Health and Social Care Committee

FTWW Gives Evidence on Women’s Health to Senedd

  Thursday March 10th saw representatives of both FTWW and British Heart Foundation Cymru called upon by the Senedd’s Health and Social Care Committee to give evidence in support of a women’s health plan for Wales.  FTWW and BHF Cymru have been co-facilitating a third sector coalition, made up of a number of Royal Colleges, specialist charities, and patients, in developing a vision for women and girls’ health in Wales which has a holistic, life-course approach and encompasses a range of physical and mental health issues, all which have a particular impact on women. On behalf of that Coalition, our two…

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