Celebrating National Lottery Community Fund’s 25th Birthday


Women’s Aid ABCLN is celebrating the National Lottery Community Fund’s (The Fund) 25th birthday and reflecting on the extraordinary impact funding has had for women and children affected by domestic abuse in this area.

Looking back to 1998, CEO Rosemary Magill says “Women’s Aid ABCLN received £108,000 from The Fund to provide safe refuge accommodation and support for women and children affected by domestic violence in Ballymena; and in 2005 we were awarded the capital costs associated with purchasing and refurbishing The Naomi Centre to be used as a training and resource centre.”

“In 2010 we were awarded funding via The Fund’s People’s Millions programme to develop our outdoor Safe Haven in Antrim with a sensory garden and secure play area; and closely following this we established The Cornerstone in Antrim, with funding for an intervention programme working with young people at risk of underachievement and disengagement at school – to re-engage them into the education system.”

“In 2015 our pioneering Family First project funded via The Fund’s Reaching Out: Supporting Families programme was launched in partnership with the Northern Health and Social Care Trust providing an early intervention approach to address the devastating impact of domestic abuse on families and prevent them reaching a crisis situation.”

“And, since 2016 our Make It Better project funded by The Fund’s  Empowering Young People’s programme has supported young people in schools, facilitated Voices Groups, homework clubs and on a one to one basis across Antrim, Ballymena, Carrickfergus, Larne and Newtownabbey, working with them to set goals, improve their education, health and wellbeing and social development.”

“There is no doubt, when you look at all that has been achieved and the incredible impact funding has had for women, children and young people affected by domestic abuse, we are indebted to the National Lottery Community Fund for their commitment and support. And we very much look forward to continuing our partnership in the years ahead.”

Seamus McCann, from the National Lottery Community Fund, added: “I am delighted that thanks to funding raised by National Lottery players we have been able to support Women’s Aid ABCLN. It is clear that these projects are making a major difference in the lives of children living with domestic abuse. We are proud to support such innovative and ground breaking work.”

For more information contact Women’s Aid ABCLN on 028 25 632136.