Expanding provisions for neurodivergent women

Extended provision for neurodivergent women in Lancaster from The Growing Club CIC

The Growing Club CIC are excited to announce that they have been awarded funding from The Community Foundation for Lancashire’s Women’s Fund. This grant will fund the continuation of one of the organisations key aims: to empower neurodivergent women in the Lancaster area.

The Growing Club CIC, established in 2016 by two neurodivergent women, is a social enterprise committed to ensuring women from all backgrounds are valued for their strengths and skills. They run workshops, courses, and events that provide employment and entrepreneurial skills for women.

The Growing Club has just completed a 12-month campaign on Empowering Neurodivergent Women in the Workplace (funded by Rosa), advocating for workplace shifts that will foster greater inclusion and support for neurodivergent women. Based on this, The Growing Club has decided to expand its work around neurodiversity in women and is excited to announce this upcoming project.

Through this grant, The Growing Club will be:

  1. Continue the Neuro Nurture Course: a safe space for neurodivergent women to build self-advocacy skills, identify strengths to boost employment and enterprise knowledge, and develop a personal support strategy.
  2. Scope further needs for Neurodivergent Women: Megan Pickles, a project worker at The Growing Club, will scope the needs of neurodivergent women who have struggled with substance misuse and compile specific resources and support.
  3. Enterprise and Business Coaching: this fund will provide one-to-one coaching sessions for employment and enterprise advice.

Neuro Nurture was trialled as a pilot course in December of last year, with participants feeding back how transformative they had found the experience. One participant said:

“The Neuro Nurture pilot allows me to safely explore my neurodiversity alongside others, where I feel understood, at home, and in a safe space for the first time in a long time. I love the welcoming space… sensitivity and respect shown.”

Neurodivergent women often go undiagnosed or misdiagnosed, leading to challenges in self-confidence and self-belief. Further, the educational system and professional workplaces pose challenges that marginalise neurodivergent women further, making it hard to find employment or get promotions.

Over the years, The Growing Club has seen an increasing number of neurodivergent women attend its courses on entrepreneurship skills. Many women have chosen to become self-employed, citing incompatibility with rigid workplace structures as a significant motivating factor for leaving traditional employment. 

Using a holistic approach to the Neuro Nurture course, The Growing Club aims to empower neurodivergent women through confidence-boosting, enterprise skills, and self-advocacy skills. The course adopts a strengths-based approach, and group facilitators will guide participants through identifying and articulating their unique strengths. Then, trainers will work with neurodivergent women to build the confidence to advocate for themselves and get support in working to their strengths.

If this interests you, please email the coordinator, Megan at megan@thegrowingclub.co.uk or call the office number on 01524 383846.

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