First Steps Womens Centre Dungannon

First Steps Womens Centre Dungannon

News & Blog

Christmas Coffee Morning 2018

First Steps Coffee Morning with Santa

We enjoyed another successful Christmas Coffee Morning & Raffle on Wednesday 12th December 2018 - and what a great start to the festive season!

The crowds began to gather just before 11am and people continued to call throughtout the morning!  Local councillors, MP's and MLA's were also in attendance.  Michelle Gildernew MP said: "I was delighted to attend another hugely successful Coffee Morning at First Steps Women's Centre. It has been an eventful year for management, staff and users of the centre, with many highs and lows, but with the newly renovated facilities and compassionate and empathetic staff, I have no doubt that FSWC will go from strength to strength, and continue to provide training, support and confidence to the women of Dungannon and South Tyrone in 2019 and well into the future." 

A great morning and atmosphere was enjoyed by all and the icing on the cake came at 12 noon with the arrival of Santa and his trusty Elf who proceeded to entertain the children and provide presents. Ho! Ho! Ho!

As well as tea, coffee and juice there was plenty to whet the appetite from homemade sausage rolls, assorted sandwiches, delicious traybakes, sumptuous cakes, swiss rolls, pavlova and scones with jam and cream.

A Wellbeing student added "Thank you for this morning such a great morning chatting and eating. Your display was fantastic and the homemade sausage rolls were to die for.   I have really enjoyed my time from I discovered FSWC.  Pass on my thanks to everyone"

We would also like to thank everyone who attended, brought/made food, bought tickets and/or provided some wonderful prizes!

Read more ...

Celebrating East Timor Culture

East Timor Ladies 

Our ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) students are learning about the different cultures of their fellow class mates.

Today we are learning about East Timor.  Class students Sonia da Costa and Arsenia Guterres are proudly displaying their national costumes.

Looking fabulous ladies!!

Fundraise while Christmas Shopping

Donate while Christmas Shopping 

Did you know that you can donate to FSWC while shopping online for Christmas????

It couldn't be easier to raise free funds on your mobile device via Give as you Live. Simply click here  or sign up for free on your device, then search for the store you want to shop with using the search facility.

Once you've found the store you want to shop with click on the "Shop & raise" button. You'll be redirected to the stores website where you can shop as normal.

Once you've made a purchase the store will confirm your transaction with us. We'll then send you an email confirming how much you've raised for your chosen charity . It's that simple!

Celebrating Culture

Lithuanian culture 

Our ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) students are learning about the different cultures of their fellow class mates.

Today they are learning about Lithuania and Rita Brazeviciene and Sarema Kieziate have kindly dressed up for the day!

Looking fabulous ladies!

Over £51,000 Additional Benefit Identified

Benefit Checker available

FSWC's FREE Benefit Check Service has idenified over £51,000 in additional benefits for men and women in the Mid-Ulster area.

As you can see from the above report, there has been 72 new referrals to our Service for the financial year ending 31st March 2018.  This means that people are still unaware of the benefits they are entitled to.  

Since Universal Credit has been computerised, we have been inundated with calls from people with little or no computer experience.  This has also made it more difficult for our foreign national neighbours making this a necessary and vital service.

If you or someone you know would like to avail of this FREE service, please contact Gillian on (028) 8772 7648.

Please Note:  This Service is only available on Thursdays & Fridays.

Back to School!

It is hard to believe the summer is nearing an end and the kids will be back at school which means -  the rush for school uniforms is on!

Did you know that you can get great deals and most importantly raise free funds for your local Charity when you shop online via Give as you Live??

Back to School

Just click on the picture above and start shopping and donating today!

First Steps Women's Centre is a registered Charity - Registration Number XR27582.

Happy shopping!


Arlene Foster DUP MLA Visit

FSWC Creche visit by Arlene Foster DUP MLA

First Steps Women’s Centre (FSWC) had the pleasure in welcoming DUP MLA Arlene Foster to First Steps Women’s Centre today (FSWC).

Ms Foster was accompanied by Mid Ulster Council’s Deputy Chair Frances Burton DUP. 

Michael McGoldrick, CEO FSWC gave a tour of the refurbished premises and both ladies were extremely impressed with the expansion of the floor space within the Centre.

“The change is a credit to the hard work of the Centre Staff, Volunteers and Board members”, said Ms Burton. 

Read more ...

Final Open Day

Final Open Day 

Today was the last of our Open Days this week!

Many, many thanks to all the ladies who called in, compeleted application forms and left lovely messages in our Visitors Book.

We look forward to seeing you again in September!

Open Day Three

Open Day 3

More lovely visitors today and more lovely comments:

  • Very welcoming!
  • Lovely modern building
  • Helpful Staff
  • Great opportunities offered

We are Open again tomorrow - call in!

Open Day Two

Open Day 2

More lovely ladies calling in for a chat and signing up for a course!

We also had a visit from Jo and Janice from Asda. 

More lovely comments:

  • Best wishes - great facility!
  • It's beautiful, like the Staff! Amazing!
  • Brilliant job, welcoming place!
  • Good advice. Welcoming
  • Looking great! Looking forward to attending courses.
  • Lovely place. Great friendly staff.

Everyone loving our new space!

Open Day One

Open Day 1

Great start to our Open Days!

Today is the first of our four day Open Days this week.  Derek and Catherine from SWC will be here today and tomorrow promoting their "College Connect" programme for 16-24 year olds.

We have had a few returners but mostly new faces today. 

Thank you all for calling in and signing our Vistors Book.  Some of the comments read:

  • Excellent - very informative!
  • Welcoming
  • Very homely
  • Girls warm and friendly
  • Excellent facility!
  • Loved being here last year

Please tell your friends and family and invite them along.

£35,000 Donation Transforms FSWC

Michael & Yvonne with Asda 

Following a donation of £35,000, Asda Cookstown General Store Manager, Peter Beckett, and Asda Cookstown Community Champion, Janice Gibson, were delighted to attend the recent opening of the refurbished First Steps Women’s Centre in Dungannon on behalf of the Asda Foundation.

Aimed at transforming the lives of local women, the First Steps Women’s Centre provides educational and training support, alongside health and well-being services. As a direct result of the donation from Asda, the centre was able to improve the on-site facilities for service users through an extensive refurbishment project, including extending its childcare facilities.

Read more ...

Patsy McGlone Visit

Patsy McGlone MLA SDLP

Patsy McGlone MLA (SDLP) called into the Centre today. He was extremely impressed with our renovations and said:

"I enjoyed my visit to First Steps Women's Centre and to see first hand the great resource it provides for the local community. The new investment and works to the building has undoubtedly added further to that resource to the community and I have been only too glad to work with Michael and his team and wish them all the best for the future"

Official Opening


A women’s group in Dungannon has transformed an abandoned mill in the town with the help of National Lottery funding, creating a facility which is set to help improve the lives of women living in the Mid-Ulster area, and those newly arrived to the community.

First Steps Women’s Centre, an organisation which has worked for twenty years with women to help enhance their life prospects, is celebrating the launch of the new facility having received £350,000 in funding from the Big Lottery Funded Space & Place Programme.

Read more ...

Our new Leaflets have arrived!

We are now in possession of our new leaflets!!

We have changed the size and design so that you can tell at a glance what FSWC is all about.  Aren't they fab??!!

Don't forget our Open Days  from Monday 6th - Thursday 9th August 2018 where you can call in and view our amazing new space.

New Leaflet front

Read more ...

Library Visit


Pre ESOL Library visit 

 Pre ESOL tea and coffee

The Pre-ESOL Class paid a visit to Dungannon Library today.  Elizabeth kindly gave us a detailed tour of each floor and the great facilities on offer.

  • Computers are available to children (under 8 years must be accompanied by an adult) 
  • Books are available in all languages
  • Any book can be ordered in any language.
  • There are books available for the Excelerated Reading Progamme which encourages children to read by making it fun.
  • Rhythm & Rhyme (0-4 years) Every Friday  10.30am & 11.15am and Saturday 11.00am.
  • Knit & Natter every Thursday morning from 10.00am - just drop in.
  • Basic one-to-one computer lessons - need to book
  • Free tea/coffee/newspapers 
  • Student study area on the top floor (16+)

After our visit to the Library the ladies enjoyed tea and biscuits in La Scala restaurant, Ranfurly House.

Space & Place Visit

Space and Place Visit

It was lovely to welcome the Space and Place people here today.  

After tea and scones and an update from Project Manager Yvonne Corbett they had a wee duke at our on-going renovation work which they are kindly sponsoring.

As you can see they were all well impressed!

Birthday Celebrations!

Birthday Girl

Many happy returns to our Birthday girl and prominent supporter of FSWC Patrica Davies.

We hope you have a lovely day!

More Articles ...

  1. Renovations Week 5
  2. Asda Foundation helps First Steps Women’s Centre ‘rebuild’ lives
  3. Renovations Begin!
  4. ESOL class visit to the Hill of the O'Neill
  5. Voluntary Directors Required!
  6. We are in the Ulster Tatler!
  7. International Women's Day - Thursday 8th March 2018! #PressforProgress
  8. Christmas Coffee Morning & Raffle 2017
  9. Leisure Centre & Council Offices Visit
  10. Raising Money For Children in Need
  11. Pre Esol Visit to Ranfurly House & The Hill of O'Neill
  12. Local Co-op Community Fund Update
  13. Our new students
  14. Visit from Michelle Gildernew MP and Colm Gildernew MLA
  15. Visual Arts Project Wall hanging
  16. Carla Lockhart DUP MLA Visit
  17. Promoting our courses and services
  18. DUP Leader Visit
  19. Meeting with Rosemary Barton UUP MLA
  20. Enrol now for September Courses!
  21. Esol Farewell
  22. Introduction to Computers Certificates
  23. Raise FREE funds for us every time you shop online!
  24. New September 2017 Leaflet
  25. Erasmas+ Visitors
  26. Local Giving Appeal - Save Our Services!
  27. International Women's Day 2017 Comments
  28. International Women's Day 2017
  29. First Steps Quiz
  30. Successful Job Fair!
  31. Our Funding success made front page news!
  32. Christmas Fayre & Raffle Pictures
  33. £343,730 Space & Place award for First Steps Women’s Centre
  34. Rosemary Barton MLA Visit
  35. New Students
  36. Great Start to our Open Days
  37. Walking Group Photo
  38. Digital Photography Class
  39. Q Radio interview with our Creative Wellbeing Course Tutor
  40. Christmas Coffee Morning & Raffle Huge Success!!
  41. New Notice Board
  42. Patsy McGlone MLA Visit
  43. Hallowe'en Fun
  44. Denise Mullen SDLP Visits FSWC
  45. FSWC in Words From Our Online Survey
  46. Tesco Creche Donation
  47. A Warm Welcome to Our New Childcare Staff!
  48. Open Day Photos
  49. First Steps Women’s Centre Launches New ESF Training Programme
  50. Evaluations March 2015





First Steps Womens Centre on Twitter