Wonder Widows

Posted on the 3rd June 2019

My motivation in supporting bereaved widows came from seeing my friend’s bereaved mother suffering. I was saddened that the community was not there to support her at her time of need. This made me realise there was a gap in society to help widowed people through their grief with  emotional support and more extensive activities.

I set up the Widows Empowerment Trust in January 2017 to tackle isolation and loneliness facing widows and others in need due to bereavement. It is a real family effort. I have four children and balancing full-time volunteering and family is a tough challenge but the support of my children and husband have really made it possible.

The widows are our primary beneficiaries, they benefit by attending wellbeing workshops where they do art and crafts, such as knitting, sewing, crotchet, dance, card making and cooking. The Trust also support widows & widowers with dementia.

Beneficiaries attending a Widows Empowerment Trust workshop

We run befriending services, visiting beneficiaries at home, hold pampering and spa sessions. Widows can also benefit from planning and organising our workshops.

Oyovwe Agatha Kigho

My role involves orchestrating all of the charity activities. This includes supervising workshops, applications for funding, attending company fairs at universities and jobcentres and bag-packing at supermarkets.

I have also jumped from an aircraft 15,000ft high last year to help raise money for the cause.Volunteers are imperative to our activities. Last year, I supported 120 young volunteers from The Challenge (National Citizen Service age 15-17), mentoring them to increase their confidence, ability and skills. I also supported more than 200 volunteers across communities including students, widows, widowers and other members of the public getting them involved in our workshops, fundraising, book keeping, admin and befriending.

Widows attending a Trust's crafts workshop

We like to get involved in Volunteers’ Week to be able to showcase the work of our volunteers across cities.

We have an extensive diversity and equality policy. This includes accessibility for all ages and ethnicities and those under 50.

Our volunteers represent most ethnic minorities and our sessions sometimes reflect this, eg. cooking Eastern cuisine.

The difference it has made to my own life is that I am proud to give back and be part of the community. I am very busy and love to find new opportunities to build the charity. It has brought my family closer as we regularly fundraise together with the volunteers.

Oyovwe Agatha Kigho

Founder, Widows Empowerment Trust

Oyovwe's passion drives her enthusiasm for the Trust

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