Upward: Young Women on the Rise

Amina launched its pilot youth programme Upward: Women on the Rise Programme in 2022. The programme was aimed at young BME women aged between 16-22 to provide them an insight into the women’s sector and the issues involved in ending violence against women. The programme was designed to give young BME women a voice. Throughout the programme, they got to build their confidence, expand their networks, and gain greater insights into VAWG issues.  

By equipping them with this knowledge, our aim was for them to use their voices and lived experiences to raise awareness and campaigns around VAWG issues within their own communities. 

The sessions last year involved visits to the Scottish Parliament, Rape Crisis, Glasgow Women’s Aid, Glasgow Women’s Library as well as workshops on sexual and menstrual health, self-care, social media, and its impact on mental health. 

The original cohort consisted of 17 young girls who completed the programme. 

Upward 2022 session
Upward Girls 2022
Upward 2022 session

The recent programme ran from June 2023 until August 2023 with sessions that included:  

  • Induction and team building session. 
  • Visit to the Scottish Parliament with talks from Kaukab Stewart MSP, Pam Gosal MSP and leader of the Labour Party Anas Sarwar. 
  • Workshop with Rape Crisis Centre Scotland, on consent and an overview of their Helpline service and campaigning work.  
  • Site visit to Glasgow Women’s Library for a film screening and discussion on coercive control followed by a tour of the library. 
  • Site visit to Glasgow Sheriff Court with Victim Support Scotland. 
  • Workshop with Police Scotland (Domestic Abuse Unit) and Helen Hughes (Lawyer) to gain an insight into the criminal justice system and if it is doing enough to protect victims of domestic abuse. 
  • Workshop with Emily Test. 
  • Workshop on Sexual and Menstrual health with Dr Sahira Dar. 
  • Training session on Equality and Diversity with Gillian Neish. 


A panel will be formed with participants from Upward 2022 and Upward 2023 with the aim of amplifying the voices of BME young women in policy making and decision making.