The Common Threads Collective

The Common Threads Collective takes a collaborative and participatory approach to issues which affect mothers living apart from children and those at risk of separation. Based within WomenCentre Kirklees, the Common Threads Collective grew from the Mothers Living Apart from their Children project. Our common threads connect us to each other and to others, whether as mothers apart or allies of the work.


The Mothers Living Apart from their Children project began in 2008, pioneering a local response to the distinct and personal experiences of mothers coping with separation from their children, for whatever reason and whether temporary or permanent. This project is now embedded within the Women’s Mental Health service. In 2014 the group produced In Our Hearts, a beautiful and sensitive book that brings together the stories and wisdom of more than 50 women involved in the project.

Our Offer

For the past ten years we have co-created thoughtful and engaging workshops within social work teaching, adoption preparation and safeguarding training; we are always keen to find new common threads and collaborate. The Common Threads Collective takes lessons from Women Centred Working, building on mother’s assets, lived experiences and skills, in order to be a part of and actively shape local and national dialogue about the issues affecting mothers apart.


If you would like to discuss ideas about working with us please make initial enquiries to

Useful links

Footprints to Understanding report – Evaluation of Mothers Living Apart From Their Children project 2013-2014. Showcasing the projects ability to harness innovation, creativity and collaboration.

Listen to some of us on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour – we are first up

Threads of Connection

Threads of Connection: Making the most of post-adoption letterbox exchange.

I had to dig deep

Isolation experiences of mothers living apart from their children during the 2020 pandemic.

Revisiting Mothers Apart:

Life in the Goldfish Bowl (2014)