SWAN was first founded by Founder Saiqa Ali in 2010, alongside a group of female friends in South London in a bid to formalise the charity work they had been doing in their community for many years.
SWAN prides itself in forming the food bank in South London that provides food aid to those in need, SWAN 500 which is a community initiative to get more people to contribute to helping the wider society and Bread appeal which has been successful in providing refugees in areas such as Moria in Greece with vital bread for survival.
Every time there was an emergency locally, nationally or internationally which needed a response, the group - individually or as a group - mobilised their friends, families and the wider community to collect donations to provide aid to those in need.
After lots of deliberation they decided on the name SWAN - “Southern” to reflect their heritage from South Asia and their habitat in South London. “Women” because the group is all women and “Aid” because their primary mission was and is the provision of aid to individuals and groups who need it. Finally, “Network” was used because their aim was to involve other women (and men) to join SWAN and benefit the wider society at large.
The SWAN network grew and more women joined the network. Currently there are nine members on the SWAN board.
There are now over 20 committed volunteers and many supporters of our work and we hope to continue to work to see SWAN flourish.