Want to find out more about where to get support? Unsure about your rights during pregnancy or early motherhood? Sometimes there are things we can’t help with or that other organisations are better equipped to support you on. We have created the following list of resources to show what other support is available.
Community services directory
This booklet gives you a list of some other services, mostly in the North London area, that cover a wide range of issues including housing, immigration issues, employment, healthcare, domestic violence and sexual abuse support and many more.
Your inside guide to pregnancy, birth and motherhood in prison
This Birth Companions publication, which has been developed in partnership with women who have lived experience, offers an accessible and comprehensive guide to pregnancy and early motherhood in the prison system, including information on:
- Making decisions about a pregnancy
- What support is available to women What to expect at every stage of the process
- Mother and Baby Units in prison
- Separation from a baby
The guide is useful for pregnant women and mothers, their family members and support networks, and the professionals working with them. The information it provides will be of value both before and during a prison sentence.
PramDepot is an arts-led recycling project providing Baby Boxes filled with high quality recycled baby clothes and equipment to vulnerable new mums and their babies. They work with Birth Companions, Helen Bamber, Happy Baby Community, Haringey Migrant Support and 20 other organisations in and around London. They specialise in supporting mums who are homeless, have no recourse to public funds, or are facing disadvantage.
Birthrights is the UK’s only organisation dedicated to improving women’s experience of pregnancy and childbirth by promoting respect for human rights. They believe that all women are entitled to respectful maternity care that protects their fundamental rights to dignity, autonomy, privacy and equality. They can provide free, accurate and accessible legal information and advice on human rights and the law relating to childbearing women.
They have produced a series of fact sheets, some of which can be downloaded below:
You can find the full list of Birthrights fact sheets here.
Advance are a women’s organisation, providing emotional and practical support to women in London. They work to support women who experience domestic abuse to be safe and take control of their lives, and women who have committed crime or are at risk of offending to break the cycle. A large part of their work is crisis intervention – for women who require urgent help and face imminent danger. Advance also run a number of Women’s Centres, where they offer activities and groups such as coffee mornings, well-being sessions and film club you can join. Advance’s Women Centres are safe women-only spaces where women can join in, be themselves; somewhere they can share, learn, laugh and heal. All of Advance’s services are free and confidential.
AIMS works towards better births for all by campaigning and information sharing, protecting human rights in childbirth and helping women to know their rights, whatever birth they want, and wherever they want it. Their pages of information on Pregnancy, Birth and Infant Feeding, intended to provide useful information on a variety of topics that we are frequently asked about on our helpline. This information is not intended to replace medical advice, but instead to help women to work out what questions they may wish to ask their health care providers to help them to make their own decisions.
Family Rights Group's goal is to enable children to be raised safely and thrive within their family and community. The Charity works with parents whose children are in need, at risk or are in the care system and with members of the wider family who are raising children unable to remain at home. They offer a free and confidential telephone and digital advice service providing legal and practical advice to families.
The Breastfeeding Network (BfN) aims to be an independent source of support and information for breastfeeding women and those involved in their care.
The Breastfeeding Network also run the National Breastfeeding Helpline. This helpline offers friendly, non-judgemental, independent, evidence based breastfeeding support and information to anyone in the UK who needs it. All calls are answered by volunteers who have breastfed their own children, have completed comprehensive training and undertake ongoing training and supervision.
The Helen Bamber Foundation is a UK-based human rights organisation, formed in April 2005 to help rebuild lives and inspire a new self-esteem in survivors of gross human rights violations. Their specialist team of therapists, doctors and legal experts hold an international reputation for providing therapeutic care, medical consultation, legal protection, counter-trafficking support and practical support including welfare and community integration work.
This resource is for anyone who has experienced childhood sexual abuse and who has questions or concerns about being pregnant, having a baby or becoming a parent. It is also for partners or friends who support you if you would like to share it with them.
The resource has been co-produced with women who have experienced childhood sexual abuse. Some of them have been pregnant, some have had babies, others haven't but hope that they might one day become a mother. It has been produced in collaboration with The Survivors Trust. You will also find links to specialist support services in the 'Further resources' section at the end of the resource.
Samaritans is a charity providing emotional support to anyone in emotional distress, struggling to cope, or at risk of suicide throughout Great Britain and Ireland. The Samaritans run a telephone helpline, and are available to call, day or night, 365 days a year, for anyone who’s struggling to cope, who needs someone to listen without judgement or pressure. Their phone number is 116 123.
Tommy’s is the UK’s largest charity funding research into stillbirth, premature birth and miscarriage. Their website provides baby loss information and support, and a midwife-led pregnancy information hub covering everything you need to know about having a safe and healthy pregnancy, from conception to birth.
Tommy's has also developed a digital Miscarriage Support Tool, to give women and birthing people who have experienced one or more miscarriages personalised miscarriage information and support. It aims to make sure families can access information about the tests and treatments they are entitled to, alongside supportive information which can help them to make decisions about trying for pregnancy again. You can access the tool here:
Women’s Aid is a national charity working to end domestic abuse against women and children. They work to ensure women are believed, know abuse is not their fault and that their experiences have been understood. Women's aid provide a live chat service, support from the specialist workers via email, and a Survivors’ Forum, where women who have been affected by domestic abuse can share their experiences and support one another.
You can also find loads of practical support and information in their Survivor's Handbook:
Shelter exists to defend the right to a safe home for individuals, in communities, and across society. Every year, they help defend the rights of millions struggling with bad housing or homelessness through their advice, support, and legal services. Shelter can provide advice online, over the phone, or in person at one of their centres if you are facing any kind of housing issues. They can also offer support in housing emergencies, and legal advice where necessary.
Loads of helpful resources are available on Shelter's website, on topics such as housing benefits, eviction, homelessness and many others. You can browse their resources here.
Citizens Advice is an independent organisation specialising in confidential information and advice to assist people with legal, debt, consumer, housing and other problems in the United Kingdom. They believe no one should have to face these problems without good quality, independent advice, and they exist to give people the knowledge and the confidence they need to find their way forward. Their network of independent charities offers confidential advice online, over the phone, and in person, for free.
PAC-UK is a charity that provides specialist therapy, advice, support and counselling for anyone affected by adoption. PAC-UK is independent from Social Services and runs an advice line: 020 7284 5879 (Monday, Tuesday and Friday 10am - 4pm, Wednesday and Thursday 2pm -7.30pm).
The British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) provides advice to women who are making decisions about their pregnancy. They aim for a future where every woman can exercise reproductive autonomy and is empowered to make her own decisions about pregnancy, and deliver high quality, woman-centred reproductive health care.
If you are pregnant, BPAS can give you more information about your options, such as continuing the pregnancy, having a termination or considering adoption. They can also offer advice on other reproductive topics such as contraception and sexually transmitted infections (STIs).