support, education, empowerment, development






MENU menu

Close close menu


Our Story

Watford Women's Centre was established in 1989 by a group of exceptional women who came together to volunteer their time and support to victims of sexual violence and rape in and around Watford. 


Over the past 30 years the charity has developed a needs-led service, shaped by what local women tell us makes a real and lasting difference in their lives. We recognise that the challenges women face can often be complex and overwhelming, and we strive to reduce gender inequality, build trusting relationships and empower women to become independent, productive and healthy.


The charity has also been responsive to the needs of the wider community and we now deliver education and training services to men as well as women over the age of 18, who are in need of support in and around the Watford area and across Hertfordshire. Our domestic abuse services are for women only, and our Centre remains a safe space for them. 


Our Mission

We provide life changing services for women to lead independent, productive and healthier lives, and also support our wider community


Our Vision

To create a community wide culture that has zero tolerance for family or partner abuse and that fosters healthy relationships based on mutual respect and equality


Our values

All women are welcome  

A Centre for all women offering information, support, education, and signposting, with a women-only space in the centre. 


Generous of spirit and resource

Valuing each woman by sharing of our time and resources.  


Encouraging of involvement and empowerment

A place that values every woman’s contribution and does all it can to support personal development.


Respectful of difference and non-judgemental

Every woman is accepted, we are a place that actively values diversity and sees diversity as a source of enrichment.  


Responsive to changing needs

Our programmes reflect what our current clients have told us they want and we see our role as trying to accommodate any woman’s changing needs. 



We respect any woman’s right to privacy and maintain total confidentiality unless there are safeguarding issues.  


Low cost

We aim to keep costs to a minimum and provide an affordable service. 


A safe space 

A safe and mutually respectful place to work, learn and grow.  


Our Strategy

The cornerstone aims that inform our strategies as are as follows: 


Our Team 

Our Charity is governed by a board of trustees who have a range of expertise across key areas of the organisation.  Day to day management of the charity is delegated to the Chief Executive with support from a team of dedicated and experienced Service Leads and delivery staff.


Our volunteers are highly valued and over 50 volunteers bring passion and experience to support the delivery of services such as teaching, administration, reception, and counselling.


We are connected to a wide range of local partners whose support is invaluable in helping us deliver high quality integrated support to our clients.  

I love this sanctuary: A place to confide, overcome challenges and grow!




Our policies

Data Protection Policy

Annual Report

Annual Report 2020-21





Fiona Miller CEO Watford Women's Centre






Fiona Miller - CEO

Fiona Miller joined the organisation in 2018 as the CEO responsible for leading the charity towards a sustainable future.  Fiona has worked in a variety of leadership roles within Further Education and also as an Adult Learning consultant. Fiona is a strong supporter of Gender Equality and women's rights and believes the charity is a crucial and unique service providing integrated support for all women and our community.




Dirin Hamakarim







Dirin Hamakarim - Education & Training Manager

Dirin Hamakarim is a qualified teacher and career advisor, she has worked at WWC for 15 years.  A passionate and determined service area lead, Dirin ensures that every person who makes the decision to learn with us achieves and thrives.  Dirin has supported many volunteers over the years, to develop skills and confidence, gain qualifications, and move into work both at the centre as tutors and the wider local labour market.


Watford WomensCentre






Debra Clay - Clinical Support Manager 

Debra joined  Watford Women’s Centre in 2010 as a volunteer placement counsellor.  After she gained her qualification in 2011, she continued as a volunteer counsellor for a further seven years.  She has a background in adult education and has delivered self-esteem courses for the Centre, and has co-facilitated the My Life programme with Alison.   Debra ran the counselling service with Amanda for two years.  Amanda now runs the service with Debra providing clinical and management support.  She is also a clinical supervisor, runs her own small private practice and is a counsellor trainer. 








Amanda King - Clinical Services Manager 

Amanda King joined the Women’s Centre as a student counsellor on a two-year placement in January 2012 and stayed on as a volunteer counsellor after she qualified in May 2014 with an MA in Contemporary Therapeutic Counselling from the University of Hertfordshire.  In January 2019 she took over the management of the counselling service as a job share with Debra Clay.  Amanda is now responsible for the bulk of the day-to-day management of the service, with Debra providing clinical support.


Watford WomensCentre








Laura North - Domestic Abuse Services Manager

Laura joined the organisation in September 2020 as Project Manager for our new National lottery funded project My Ally.  Laura has over 14 years’ experience within the charity sector as a project manager and is committed to changing people’s lives and ensuring projects thrive. Laura believes strongly that every woman experiencing domestic abuse or struggling within their relationship should not ever feel alone no matter what stage of their journey they are in and she feels immensely proud to work for a charity that provides various services for women where they will feel valued and cared for.


Ruth Paterson - Chair of Trustees

Ruth joined the Women’s Centre as a Trustee in June 2021 and was appointed as the Chair of Trustees in November 2021. Ruth has a background in psychology and is currently working in NHS healthcare leadership and management.  Ruth previously led and redesigned hospital volunteering services and has experience working as part of the senior leadership team of a local NHS charity.  As the Chair, Ruth provides leadership and direction to the Board of Trustees to enable the Board to fulfil their responsibilities for the governance oversight and the strategic direction of WWC. Ruth is also a member of the Resources Sub-committee.










Herts Sunf;owerHDAHNCS