Unlocking change


Imkaan is the umbrella women’s organisation for organisations addressing violence against Black and minoritised women and girls in the UK. They provide strategic advocacy and support, and a representative voice for their members.

During the pandemic we saw a threefold increase in women with No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) seeking help. [Imkaan’s fund] enabled us to increase legal caseworker capacity thereby increasing the number of service users we supported, 100% received positive decisions with applications to regularise their immigration status. The impact of this is life changing, enabling women to escape abusive relationships, rebuild their lives and become more resilient. We were very pleased with Imkaan managing this funding programme. As a small ‘led by and for’ organisation, to work with a grant maker who understands our capacity issues and has in-depth knowledge about our work and how this is embedded within Black feminist and intersectional values was refreshing.

Ashiana Network, Imkaan member

Imkaan is the leading organisation working to build capacity and improve practice in women’s organisations that are led by Black and minoritised women. As well as providing support to smaller, specialist organisations, they ensure that their evidence and voices are heard in broader collaborations and in the broader policy context.

They developed the Imkaan Accredited Quality Standards framework for specialist services for Black and minoritised women focusing on harmful practices, which is now a benchmark for practice across the sector. They have also developed Safe Minimum Practice Standards to improve safeguarding at a grassroots sector. Imkaan play an important role in increasing understanding of the specific needs of Black and minoritised women and girls, as well as the specialist services that support them.

Connection to Esmée's strategy

Long-term outcomes
  • Gender-based violence is reduced through the delivery of preventative work.
  • Policy, practice, and the law better meets the needs of women experiencing multiple challenges and discrimination.
  • Organisations working towards racial justice across our strategy, led by people experiencing racial inequity, are financially resilient and socially transformative.

Supporting Imkaan’s work allows us to support and build capacity within specialist delivery organisations and ensure that their voice and evidence is represented at a strategic level informing wider change.

Laura Lines, Funding Manager and Social Change Lead, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

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