Alana House – Empowering Local Women

Author's position
RVA Youth Volunteer
Article date
25 August 2016
Primary interest

What is Alana House?

Alana House is a community project run by PACT (Parents and children together) which aims to improve the lives of women in the Reading and West Berkshire area. It focuses on providing early intervention and prevention support for vulnerable women with complex needs and those at risk of offending.

Page 1 Alana House

The team at Alana House work with around 70 women a week to achieve their 3 key aims:

  •  “Improve the economic and social welfare of disadvantaged women and their families.”
  •  “Divert women from custody and reduce the impact that crime has on vulnerable women and their local community.”
  • “Empower women by giving them the tools and techniques to become independent women making a valuable contribution to society.”




What do they do?

Alana House not only offer one-­to-­one support for the women that they work with, but they offer a range of services through their partners, like numeracy skills, housing advice and self esteem and parenting courses, which provide their service users with important knowledge and skills that can help them to move forward, out of crime and into fulfilling lives.

Alana House also provides a drop­-in centre where women can receive support and advice, and get a chance to meet other women.

Through the services it provides, Alana House can help women in the Reading area to turn their lives around – one of the service users describes it as a “second family” and another talks about how, thanks to Alana House, “everything is going forward”. The fantastic work that they do was recognised in their receipt of the 2014 Howard League for Penal Reform Award in the Community Programme for Women.

How can I help?

Alana House are currently interested in putting on more activities for the women they help, so as to enable them to access a wide range of help, advice and skills. Two examples of what Alana House are looking for can be found here:

Help us make our drop-in sessions a welcoming, warm and safe place to visit

However, there is a genuine occupational requirement permitted under the Equality Act 2010 that these are only available to women.