Express & Star

Quilt of hope aims to highlight crimes and abuse against women.

A community quilt, made by women and children affected by domestic abuse and modern slavery has been unveiled in Sandwell.

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From left; Sara Ward, Chereene Love, Baljeet Farmah, Kerrie Carmichael, Shokat Lal and Vanilla Patel with the quilt

The quilt was created last month, as the women and children of the Black Country Women’s Aid refuge services came together to share their thoughts, experiences and hurt of violence and abuse and the impact that it had on their lives.

It is filled with positive words and imagery and aims to raise awareness of domestic abuse, as well as helping to mark White Ribbon Day, a global campaign led by men to end male violence against women and girls, and the start of the 16 days of action against gender-based violence.

The unveiling, held at West Bromwich Central on Monday, was attended by the leader of Sandwell Council Councillor Kerrie Carmichael, the council’s chief executive Shokat Lal, and Black Country Women’s Aid chief executive officer, Sara Ward.

Sara Ward

The quilt will be touring different venues over the coming days for people to be able to see it in detail.

Sara Ward said: “This is an important symbol of the devastating impact of domestic violence and the hurt and harm it causes.

"The women and children living in refuge wanted the community to know that they want to live a life free from abuse.

"They see hope and opportunity by seeking help and support. No one should tolerate abuse. Black Country Women’s Aid is here to help.”

Councillor Carmichael said: “The quilt sends out a message of a zero-tolerance approach to all forms of abuses and shows our commitment to working together with our partner organisations to end violent and controlling behaviour in Sandwell.

“As part of the 16 Days of Action campaign, we want as many men as possible to make the White Ribbon Promise never to commit, excuse or remain silent about male violence against women.”

You can see the quilt in person at:

  • Sandwell Council House reception, Freeth Street, Oldbury, B69 3DB today (Wednesday 29 November) from 9.30am-4pm

  • Jubilee Park (Places of Welcome Centre), Powis Avenue, DY4 0RJ on Friday 1 December from 11am-1pm

  • Sandwell Council House reception, Freeth Street, Oldbury, B69 3DB on Friday 8 December from 9.30am-4pm

The quilt was on display at West Bromwich Central Library on Monday and Glebefields Library, St Mark’s Road, Tipton, on Tuesday.

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