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The Duchess of Cornwall attends the national launch of the Wash Bag Project in Nottingham

14th March 2017

Wash Bag Project national launch

Wash Bag Project national launch

The Duchess of Cornwall visited Nottingham today for the national launch of the Wash Bag Project, a scheme that provides a wash bag of toiletries to people who have been affected by rape and sexual abuse. 

The wash bags are provided by Boots UK and are given to Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) clients who have undergone a forensic examination, providing them with some comfort at a difficult time. 

The Duchess met volunteers during the visit to a Boots UK site in Beeston who had helped pack 12,000 wash bags.

The scheme, which Boots UK has launched in collaboration with SARCs, was set up by Her Royal Highness after hearing the stories of rape and sexual abuse survivors during her frequent visits to the centres over the last five years.

Deborah Hooton, Service Manager, Nottinghamshire Sexual Assault Referral Centre,  said:  “The support that SARC’s offer to clients helps to improve their mental and physical health outcomes after they have been affected by sexual violence and enables them to gain some control back into their lives.” 

“It is really positive that Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall is taking great interest in SARCs as this is raising the profile of SARCs and will encourage those in need of our services to access them.”


A speech by The Duchess of Cornwall at Boots UK to mark the national launch of the Washbag Project

Published on 14th March 2017

Firstly I would like to say how much I have enjoyed my visit to the headquarters of Boots today, and what a pleasure it has been to meet so many of you who work in this enormous building. But more importantly to thank you all for your contribution to the Washbag Project; a project that we started to think about 5 years ago when I first became aware of quite how horrific the consequences of rape and sexual abuse are.  

I wanted to find a practical way of helping women and girls, and men, who had been left traumatised through no fault of their own, to have some comfort at such a distressing time. 

Thanks to Boots sponsoring this scheme, it has enabled all 49 Sexual Assault Referral Centres (SARCs) in this country to be supplied with these wash bags.  So, Ladies and Gentleman, once again my heartfelt thanks to everyone here at Boots, for your immense generosity, your invaluable help, and above all for showing your support to the SARCs, which are a lifeline to survivors of rape and sexual assault, as they rebuilt their shattered lives.


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