Charity In Kind Direct appointed as key partner to Her Majesty The Queen’s Wash Bags Project

In Kind Direct were honoured to attend the reception hosted by Her Majesty The Queen at Buckingham Palace recently to recognise those who support survivors of sexual assault and to mark the relaunch of the Wash Bags project.

Caring for people who are at their most vulnerable is at the heart of the Wash Bags Project. Each bag contains personal care items donated by Boots, such as shampoo, shower gel, toothpaste and a toothbrush providing a small gesture of comfort during a highly distressing time for people using the service.  

Since the partnership began, with the help of volunteers from logistics partner TTS, In Kind Direct have been able to distribute nearly 5,000 washbags to 58 SARCs across the UK, helping thousands of service users feel clean and cared for, following their visit.

Rashidah Naumsisi, Matron at The Havens, managed by King’s College Hospital, said: “We support adults and children who have experienced rape, sexual abuse or sexual assault and our aim is to provide a safe place where people can gain some control back in their lives.

“The Wash Bags Project is a simple initiative, but we know that it makes a huge difference, giving people comfort and dignity when they are at their most vulnerable. Some of the people we support are instructed not to wash until after they have had an examination, and the wash bags help them feel more human. Our clients are often extremely moved to be given a wash bag, and it’s so rewarding to be part of this work.”

Lynn Sharman, representative at Juniper Lodge SARC said: The Wash Bags Project has such a positive impact for everyone that uses our services.

“When we offer the wash bags, the individual is at their most vulnerable having suffered an ordeal, they are truly so appreciative to receive such a personal gift, which empowers them on their recovery journey.”

The event was hosted by The Queen with approximately 300 guests in attendance including In Kind Direct, representatives from multiple SARCs, service users and key organisations, including charities, police forces and health services, as well as Rape Crisis South London, The Women’s Centre Cornwall, The Havens, Croydon RASASC and the Mirabel Centre of which Her Majesty is Patron.

During the event The Queen met with our CEO Rosanne Gray and Trustee Teresa Tideman.

Rosanne Gray, CEO of In Kind Direct said:

“It is an honour to work with Her Majesty The Queen on such a crucial initiative, to support people who have experienced rape and sexual assault.

“Providing comfort and dignity during times of distress is incredibly important and we know the wash bags can make a significant difference to someone’s life and onward journey after leaving the centre.

“We were privileged to attend the Washbags relaunch reception at the Palace yesterday, amongst inspiring organisations and partners and hearing from a service user. We are very proud of this partnership, enabling us to provide people with a small gesture of comfort at such a distressing time of their life”

The Queen has been highlighting organisations supporting victims of Rape and Sexual Assault for over ten years as a part of her mission to combat violence against women. During the event, she made a moving speech highlighting the importance of this mission, the strides that have been made and the essential work that still needs to be done.

In her speech, The Queen said:

“Thank you for sharing your stories, thank you for your kindness, thank you for not remaining strangers to those enduring the darkest of times.”

To find out more about the Wash Bags Project and the work that In Kind Direct does, please visit:

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