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Who We Are & What We Do

The objectives of the organisation are to support the women's

  • independence and choice; 

  • to enable peer support 

  • to empower women with learning disabilities to speak up about issues that are important to them.


To enable women with learning disabilities, to determine the course of their own lives by working with them to define their individual and group ambition hence support their meaningful progression towards that ambition.

They Called Her Salt Theatre Project Feb
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To support women with learning disabilities, helping to build independence, confidence, skills, peer support and self advocacy which in turn improves health and emotional well being


To enable the group to influence the development of services and work with others to reduce the stigma that surrounds learning disabilities and to speak up about issues that are important to them


To support women with learning disabilities, who have experienced abuse by providing them with one to one support, therapeutic group work and signposting to relevant services, in order to alleviate distress

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User Led

Ensuring the involvement of Powerhouse members for all decision making processes in the organisation

Quality of Service


Providing individual and group support of a high quality; using good practice

Safety and Support


Creating a community where women with learning disabilities can socialize and offer peer support/ peer building 

Equality of Opportunity


Advocacy of equal rights, independence and social inclusion to address the issues of discrimination in order to create an environment of equality in all aspects of the organisation

Value for Money


Offering cost effective services by engaging external facilitators as required and working in partnership with key agencies and local organisations 

Monitoring & Evaluation


Constantly utilizing both formal and informal monitoring systems to get feedback from the members and their support networks, for quality improvements of the standards of our services

Meet the Team


Tae Catford

Project Co-ordinator
Tel: 07930 162 505

Tae Catford has been working with Powerhouse for Women since 2012, and is committed to the role of coordinator, saying that "Opportunities to make a real difference to people's lives come around so rarely in life that I have to give it my best shot". She has a certificate in Teaching in the lifelong learning sector,  Level 2 qualification in Working with People with learning disabilities as well as a Diploma in Therapeutic life story work. She is currently training to be a relational therapist. Previously she worked as a freelance trumpeter and has a degree in Jazz music. 


She secretly dreams of moving to croft in the highlands of Scotland keeping sheep but knows that really she would miss everyone at Powerhouse and hate the midges.


Sarah Ruiz

Chair of Powerhouse

Sarah has worked in the Voluntary Sector for 30 years. Her last role was as the Director of NVSC for Newham. She directly managed the East London Network, working across 12 London Boroughs.

Sarah has good contacts locally which helps Powerhouse build partnerships, has very good knowledge of governance, project management and has useful experience in working with the public sector.

Our Co-facilitators
Our Volunteers

Florian Seubert, PHd Inclusive Theatre, Goldsmiths

Claudia Vau, Psychodrama Psychotherapist

Leo Samuels, Pets As Therapy

Aisha Lynch

Jane Murimi

Funmi Olala

Website Design

Leonie Gasson


Life skills

By Katharine Quarmby

How can women with learning difficulties be empowered around relationships?

Read here


Healthwatch Newham and Powerhouse for Women Report Health Services for Women with Learning Disabilities

The overall aim of the research project was to:

  • enable Women with Learning disabilities in Newham to learn about leading healthier lifestyles;

  • discuss their concerns and share their ongoing experiences and

  • to produce a report on the current experiences of 3 services: GP’s surgeries, blood tests and Newham Hospital.


The project was carried out with the support of Healthwatch Newham’s Community Grants Programme. The group was held at Powerhouse for Women, run by Project Co-ordinator Tae Catford, with a group of up to 40 women with learning disabilities (Group Sessions and Outreach Work). The project started in October 2017 and finished in March 2018, comprising of 6 research and information sessions.

Read here


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