While there are dedicated helplines for men, children,elderly people
and those with mental and physical issues - there is still not a dedicated helpline for women and girls.
We need a helpline for women.
A safe place which women can turn to, to chat about anything.
Almost a quarter of women experienced moderate to severe depressive symptoms during the pandemic.+
Suicides of girls and young women have doubled in the last 7 years.*
1 in 4 young women and girls aged 16-24 have reported self-harming.*
More than 80% of women aged 18-34 have experienced some form of sexual harassment in a public space.
Postnatal depression affects 15% of all women*.
29% of Black women, 24% of Asian women, and 29% of mixed-race women have a common mental health disorder.*
1.6 million women suffer domestic abuse every year.*
+This figure reflects the situation in June 2020.
*These figures reflect the situation pre-COVID-19.
Rant. Rave. Complain. Moan. Swear. Get angry, sad, emotional. Say what you think. Say what you feel. Say what you need to.
Polly's helpline will be a safe space where you can do all of these things or none of them. It's totally up to you.
Our aim is to be a nationwide helpline to support women and girls across the UK. To start, we are launching a 3-month pilot in Greater Manchester this summer, providing a free helpline and webchat service for women, girls, and those self-identifying as female, from the age of 13 and up. We’ll provide information, support and signpost to local Greater Manchester charities as well as national women’s services.
You can find out more on our Greater Manchester page.
Because there are times in all of our lives when things go wrong. People we love get sick or die. Relationships go bad. Maybe we drink too much. Money problems, work. Life's not simple.
Our helpline will be free and confidential. Staffed by women, to serve as their first port of call. A helpline to provide information and, if appropriate, signpost and connect callers with services offering specific support.
We aren't here to replace existing women's organisations or charities - we're here to work with them. To share our knowledge and add Polly's voice to theirs. To get women and girls the support they need.
The pandemic has added to the mental health pressures experienced by women. As prime carers, the mental toll of homeschooling, paying the bills, ensuring there's enough food and worrying about how to protect their loved ones is astronomical. Many are on the frontline as nurses and doctors.
We want Polly to be there as a pressure valve, to listen, signpost, give comfort. The mental health issues of a world pre-COVID19 are pale in comparison to the struggles of women and girls
today and in the difficult period ahead.