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Worlds first gender-lens fund appoints all women senior board of advisors

Believed to be the world’s first gender-lens fund, the Women in Safe Homes fund – managed jointly by Patron Capital and Resonance – has appointed an all-woman senior board of advisors (SBA) – a first for an impact investment fund that is focused on homelessness.

The Women in Safe Homes fund provides a solution to the lack of affordable, safe and good-quality homes for women experiencing homelessness, many of whom are survivors of domestic abuse, are leaving prison, have mental health issues, or have other complex needs.

It launched in December 2020, raising £15.5m from its seed investors. Since then, the fund has raised over £26m – aiming to reach a target size of £100-£200 million – to provide over 650 homes across the UK for over 6,000 women over its lifetime.

The SBA sits outside the formal legal structure of the fund and is intended to provide a number of important perspectives to ensure the fund’s success in creating positive social impact for women.

Meeting on a quarterly basis, the SBA’s remit will include supporting the fund’s commitment to gender lens and lived experience, it’s relationships with housing and support providers, providing direct understanding of the need and the services provided as well as investment and fund management, and supporting fundraising and property sourcing.

This unique board consists of a diverse group of ten women, and includes representative from the women’s sector and women with lived experience of women’s homelessness, and who will add a depth and richness to this gender-lens fund, continuing to set it apart in the impact investment sector.

Board members bring a range of backgrounds and experience, from the real estate sector to the social housing sector and from impact investing to the charity and trauma-informed sectors. This diversity of experience is fused with a great energy and motivation to really make the pioneering Women in Safe Homes fund a success for women who, without this fund, would be in unsafe or unsuitable housing.

All have a passion to support the Women in Safe Homes fund in its mission to not only provide safe homes for women at risk of homelessness, but to also value and empower the womens sector organisations and charity partners the fund works with and to promote effective approaches to policy makers in the women’s homelessness sector.

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