SASC invests in Hull Women’s Network to provide safe houses for vulnerable women and children

14 February 2018

We're extremely proud to have made an investment in Hull Women's Network, an award winning charity providing safe homes for vulnerable women and their children.  Read more about this innovative investment in our press release below.


14 February 2018 - Social and Sustainable Capital (SASC), a UK fund manager and social enterprise, has made a significant investment in Hull Women’s Network, based at the award-winning Preston Road Women’s Centre, provide safe homes for vulnerable women and their children in Hull.

Set up in 2004, Hull Women’s Network is part of a group of Hull-based organisations run by women and supporting women. Its services and activities include specialist domestic violence support, nursery provision, sexual health information and advice, training and volunteering opportunities, as well as access to safe and affordable housing across Hull. 

Currently, the charity has 105 properties and a waiting list of 230 women, Previously Hull Women’s Network secured funding from a mixture of sources, including investment from Future Builders England, donations, grants and the Safe as Houses scheme.

However, with a need to meet growing demand, it decided to take on social investment. Having researched the market, the charity approached SASC, who has a track record of providing social investment to organisations in Hull.

Lisa Hilder, Trustee at Preston Road Women’s Centre, said, “Taking on social investment was an exciting step for us. We approached SASC who understood our needs and came up with a very innovative and bespoke loan design and structure, designed to meet the needs of the group. They have shared the investment risk with us and given us the fantastic option to refinance at the end of the 10-year loan period based on the current purchase price of properties, which is very attractive.”

“Research tells us that women fleeing domestic violence are known to return to the perpetrator an average of seven times before finally breaking free from abuse.  With access to safe, high quality housing, we help them to break free from the abuse they suffer first time and this investment from SASC will greatly help our mission.”

 Ben Rick, Managing Director of SASC said, “Hull Women’s Network and Preston Road Women’s Centre provides a lifeline for many women and their children in Hull. We structured the investment to minimise investment risk for the group and support their ongoing work. We’re confident our investment will help many women and children in challenging situations to access good quality housing and the support services they need to rebuild their lives successfully.

“Providing safe, high quality homes for their beneficiaries is a challenge facing many UK charities and social enterprises. We hope to replicate this kind of investment to help other organisations looking to house vulnerable people in society.”

For media enquiries contact:

Kathryn Hughes, Kayak PR

Tel: 07801 823 839


Tel: 07971 557 945



Notes for Editors

About Social and Sustainable Capital

SASC provides simple finance for extraordinary charities and social enterprises.  We believe greater access to the right kind of investment makes charities and social enterprises better able to tackle society's most pressing challenges.  Our funds provide flexible capital to enable social sector organisations to grow their social impact, improving the lives of disadvantaged people across the UK.  SASC is a social enterprise.

1. The Preston Road Women’s Centre (known locally also as WINNER and the Purple House) was set up in 2000 as part of the Preston Road regeneration programme to provide a centre for women only on the Preston Road estate, Hull.

2. The Centre aims to empower women and girls, offering accredited training courses, a domestic violence and abuse service, sexual health services, outreach support, nursery provision, a housing service, a volunteer programme and a young women’s participation project. It also runs a charity shop, at its base on Preston Road.

3. Hull Women’s Network runs the Umbrella Housing service through in conjunction with Preston Road Women’s Centre to provide safe housing for women and children in need. It also launched Affordable Justice Ltd in February 2016, providing legal services and representation to women who are not eligible for Legal Aid.

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