For the 2019 Degree Shows, BA (Hons) Graphic Design student Fiona Melville is fundraising to provide personal alarms for homeless women in Plymouth.
Fiona is using her graphic design skills to raise awareness of the issue of violence and sexual violence against homeless women, in response to the recorded increase in homelessness across the UK, and what she perceives as the often unreported vulnerability to assault of women without secure housing.
With a campaign titled ‘Woman to Woman’, Fiona is collaborating with Shekinah, a Devon and Cornwall based charity that provides opportunities for people in recovery or seeking recovery, including recovery from homelessness, and with The Zone, a Plymouth-based charity that provides free and confidential information and support to young people.
Fiona said: “I grew up near High Wycombe. From visits to London when I was younger I’ve always had an awareness of homelessness and the heightened risks that it presents for women."
"During my degree at Plymouth College of Art I knew that I wanted to use my skills to make a difference in the world, and after volunteering in the kitchens at Shekinah and speaking to some of the women accessing the services there, that crystallised my plans for Woman to Woman.”
“It was such a humbling experience and a reality check to speak to women about the things that they have to deal with on a daily basis, in contrast with my own life. This led me to discuss my plans with Shekinah and The Zone, building a fundraiser to provide homeless women in the area with personal panic protection alarms."
“The Woman to Woman campaign will be live until the end of our Degree Shows and I really hope that people will consider donating. A personal alarm can help provide a woman with the reassurance to sleep at night, because they make it easier to raise the alarm and call for assistance if they are in immediate danger.”
“I’m so happy that I chose to study at Plymouth College of Art. The resources, tools and guidance offered here are amazing. At the beginning of my time here I needed reassurance about the quality of my work and an extra push to help me fulfil my potential. With the support of the lecturers here I’ve had an opportunity to stretch myself and achieve more than I would have thought possible, and now I have the confidence to go out to industry and practice graphic design and art at a professional level.”
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