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Training Guide
Your Training Provider for Issues Relating to
Middle Eastern, North African and Asian Women

Picture: April 2021, MEWSo’s Conference to Ban Virginity Tests, which lead to a coalition that helped change the law in Britain

MEWSo is a registered charitable organisation run by and for women from ethnic minority communities. The majority of the communities we serve (but not exclusively) are from Middle Eastern, North African and Asian backgrounds.

The charity was founded in 2010 by Halaleh Taheri after her experiences as a refugee fleeing war and revolution in the Middle East in the 1980s and 90s. Her multiple experiences of upheaval made her acutely aware of what it is like for displaced, ethnic minority women to make a home for themselves in a strange land, with unstable immigration status, few legal rights and a host of emotional and/or physical traumas. 

Since then, the organisation has flourished, our team has grown, and we now deliver services to women who have survived similar experiences.  We support women in escaping violence and abuse, both at home and in the wider community and help them rebuild their lives through tailored advice, guidance and support, classes, workshops and activities. 

Last year we supported over 920 women and their children to improve their safety and wellbeing (including 353 women fleeing domestic abuse). We also trained over 80 professionals from almost 60 organisations to improve their knowledge and understanding of our communities. 

To find out more about us explore the rest of MEWSo's website or check out our social media channels:  Twitter @MewsOrg, Facebook @MEWSorganisation, Instagram @mewsorganisation, the MEWSo Youtube Channel @MEWSorg.

We know our communities because we are from our communities. Our trainers are experienced professionals from the Middle East, North Africa and Asia who understand first-hand, the trauma, disadvantage, and discrimination these women face. We have specialist knowledge and experience in supporting women who have experienced: 



Our training programme explains the cultural history and background of virginity testing and hymen reconstruction; those communities where these customs are most prevalent; and the consequences, both physical and mental, for girls and young women subjected to them. We teach professionals, and those in training, about safeguarding and working with the relevant agencies, including the police, the NHS, Social Services and schools, to protect young women.

We have provided consultancy, training and workshops to almost 60 organisations and services including:

  • Refuge: National Domestic Abuse Helpline

  • Islington Council's Domestic Abuse Commissioning Group

  • MOPAC: the London Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime

  • Standing Together Against Domestic Abuse - a national charity bringing communities together to fight domestic abuse

  • Rosa: Fund For Women

  • Social Services Depts & services for women at Westminster City Council, the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea, and the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham.


  • We recognise that every organisation has different needs and require different levels of knowledge.  

  • We ask that organisations circulate a pre-training questionnaire in advance to ensure we provide training at the right level. 

  • We will work with you to design a training package that will enable your staff and/or volunteers to get the most out of the time they spend with us. 

  • Trainers may use a range of tools, for example, case studies, presentations, quizzes or online polls, role play, visual games / reflective exercises, film clips, research and statistics. We can discuss the tools we use that best suit your organisation. 

  • Our training may be designed for different audiences, for example board or management committee members who have overall responsibility for service delivery, practitioners who deliver the services, and volunteers. 

  • We are happy to train larger organisations and services independently, but also recognise that smaller organisations or those working in partnership, may want to work together to share the cost of training across services.


Our trainers are:

  • Women who hold current DBS certificates

  • Experts in their field who understand the complexity and intersectional needs of women  from the Middle East, North Africa and Asia

  • Linguists who are able to deliver sessions in English, Kurdish, Farsi / Dari, Arabic and Turkish.

  • Committed to life-long learning so that they are able to keep up to date in teaching styles, as well as legislative changes. 

  • Excellent communicators, able to engage with visual and auditory learners.

We find that our training not only informs those who participate in sessions, but has a greater impact on the culture of a service. For example, learning may:

  • Improve operational best practice 

  • Inform policy and governance development

  • Ensure that your service is fulfilling its Equality Duty

  • Break down cultural misconceptions

  • Build bridges between communities 

  • Increase intersectional awareness amongst the team

  • Support Middle Eastern, North African and Asian women who work or volunteer within your service. 



  • We work Monday to Friday

  • Full Day courses usually run from 10am to 4.30pm with a break for lunch. 

  • Half Day courses usually run from 10 am to 1pm with a comfort break. 

  • Courses may take place outside of these times and days but additional costs may be applied. 



  • We are able to deliver training either online via Zoom/Teams or in-house at your venue. 

  • We are able to deliver training at your venue within London for no additional cost.

  • We are able to deliver training at your venue,  outside of London however transport costs and any accommodation costs would be added to the total price. 



  • We recommend in-house training for groups between 6 and 20 to retain the best learning environment. For in-house delegates over this number, we will work with you to find the most cost-effective solution for training. 

  • We recommend online training for groups between 4 and 20 for full-day or part-day training. 

  • For a one-hour briefing sessions, we recommend no more than 50 delegates to enable questions to be submitted and answered. 

  • For a one-hour seminar, we do not limit how many delegates attend. 




For Statutory Services, Local Authorities, Schools, Government Departments, Police Services, or Clinical Commissioning Groups

  • In-House Training

  • Full-day training £1000

  • Half-day training £500


Please note: Prices are inclusive of transport costs for our trainers in London. For services outside of London, travel and accommodation costs would be added. 

Remote training

  • Full-Day training £800

  • Half-day (3.5 hours) training £400

  • Seminar  (1.5 hours)£200

  • Briefing (30 mins plus Q&A) £150


For voluntary sector and not-for-profit organisations

  • In-House Training

  • Full-day training £800

  • Half-day training £400


Please note: Prices are inclusive of transport costs for our trainers in London. For services outside of London, travel and accommodation costs would be added. 

Remote training

  • Full-Day training £600

  • Half-day (3.5 hours) training £300

  • Seminar  (1.5 hours)£100

  • Briefing (30 mins plus Q&A) £100


Partnership and Consortium Training
We are aware that charities face unprecedented demands for services and are experiencing funding hardships. With this in mind, for smaller voluntary sector/not-for-profit organisations, we are happy for them to share the total training costs if either the training takes place in one venue, or is delivered remotely. 

Unfunded Groups 
For grassroots and unfunded services who do not have an income but would like to request training. Please contact us directly to discuss your training needs. 

Talking Engagements for MEWSo’s Executive Director, Halaleh Taheri, can be arranged on an individual basis. Please contact her at and put 'Speak at Our Event' in the subject box.


To discuss or book a training session, email: and put 'Book a Training Session' in the subject box. We will respond to your inquiry within 5 working days.

Thank you.

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