Refugee Support Newsletter – March 2018

  • Partnerships of Hope – 21st April

  • News from local groups

  • New developments and resources

  • Upcoming events and actions

PfH Poster

Partnerships of Hope – 21st April

Whether you’re already involved in supporting refugees, would like to be or are just exploring, this event organised by Christian Concern for One World is for you. A range of groups and organisations from across the Thames Valley will be participating in a programme which will include speakers, workshops on topics such as community sponsorship and working with the media, and stalls. It’s a great opportunity for information, networking and encouragement. Free to attend, £5 with lunch. Registration essential – go to www.ccow.org.uk/events/partnerships-of-hope. For further information please contact Joanna Schüder, CCOW’s Refugee Networking Officer on joanna@ccow.org.ukor 07823 686568.

News from Local Groups

Asylum Welcome

Asylum Welcome is currently dealing with several people who are street homeless and who have been very glad to be in their cosy offices during the day. They are making them hot food in addition to the usual food parcels. Items currently needed for Asylum Welcome’s foodbank: 1L cooking oil, UHT milk, 1kg sugar, toiletries, nappies, 1 kg flour, long life juice, dried fruit and nuts. Asylum Welcome is also running an allotment, so if anyone is in touch with refugees who like growing things, then please put them in touch with John Fenning at Asylum Welcome. Contact him also about the Adopt a Room scheme, whereby an individual or group can commit to kit out one room in a house for a newly arrived refugee family

Marlow Refugee Action Group

in collaboration with Churches Together in Marlow and Churches Together in Maidenhead has an initiative, reported in the local press, to encourage volunteers to help refugees in Calais over the period of Lent by serving in the kitchens and warehouse there for a few days. 22 people have signed up so far.

New Developments and Resources

Hope for more refugee children to come to UK
Following an agreement between the UK and French governments at the end of January unaccompanied refugee children who arrived in Europe between March 2016 and January 2018 will now also be eligible to come to the UK under the Dubs scheme.

Immigration policy report highlights changes needed 
After eighteen months of considering evidence the Home Affairs Select Committee recently published its report Immigration policy: basis for building consensus. It recommends that the government proactively challenge myths and inaccuracies about immigration, honour its commitments to unaccompanied child refugees and establish a permanent Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme.

New Resource on Refugees and Mental Health
City of Sanctuary has produced an excellent information pack designed to help people understand the journeys that refugees and asylum seekers have been through that put pressure on their mental health. It includes advice and resources for helping refugees with mental health problems.

Seeking Reform of Family Reunion
Oxfam and the Refugee Council have published a new report “Safe but not Settled: The Impact of Family Separation on Refugees in the UK”. It calls for the government to expand the qualification criteria for family reunion.

Human Flow film by Ai Weiwei
If you missed the recent screenings of this powerful documentary on global migration and would like to show it at a church, school or group you can register your interest with the producers.

New Book about Syria
New book about Syria For those interested in learning more about the history of Syria as a land to which refugees came and now which refugees are leaving, Dawn Chatty has written “Syria – The Making and Unmaking of a Refuge State.”

Upcoming Events and Actions


Sunday, 17 March – Refugees Welcome Bloc at the March against Racism

Saturday, 7 April – Sanctuary Hosting volunteer information day

Saturday, 21 April – ‘Partnerships of Hope: Working Together for Refugees

Friday, 11 May – Quiz and Raffle for Witney Refugee Action

Sunday, 20 May – ‘Bike Oxford to Support Asylum Welcome

The CCOW events calendar is updated regularly with events of interest on this and other topics. Take a look!