Who we are
WAY Widowed and Young is the only national charity in the UK for men and women aged 50 or under when their partner died. Founded in 1997, WAY now has more than 4,3000 members across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
The charity provides peer-to-peer support to young, widowed people – married or not, with or without children, inclusive of sexual orientation, gender, race and religion – as they adjust to life after the death of their partner.
Typically, WAY members and volunteers organise lively social groups that meet up throughout the year – for drinks, meals out, walks and picnics. Our members organise weekends away for adults and families, go camping, have parties and offer an alternative social life for people who have lost their partner at a young age. Throughout the pandemic members have delivered more than 900 online events and more than 500 face-to-face events.
WAY has a secure members’ only website that offers a safe place for members to meet and chat online 24 hours a day and members also have access to a 24-hour telephone helpline that offers free counselling and advice.
How WAY was founded
WAY was founded 25 years ago by journalist Caroline Sarll, after her sister Mandy was widowed at the age of 35. It was a double blow for both Caroline and her sister, because it was the 25th anniversary of their own father’s death.