Sähëlï Women’s Group (SWG) was formed in 1998 as part of the Balsall Heath Forum initiative to set up resident’s groups in the area.
The group met on a fortnightly basis and discussed the needs of local women. The group identified a need for a ‘women only facility’ where women could meet and could become involved in health and fitness sessions and healthy lifestyle activities. In October 1999 the group commissioned a feasibility study through The Digbeth Trust to look into the establishment of a women’s centre in Balsall Heath.
The study by Lynne Howells with 236 local women (through questionnaires and two organised meetings) confirmed local women overwhelming wanted a local facility that took into account the culturally sensitive needs of local Muslim women. The study identified the primary activities in the women’s centre should be: