60 seconds with Nour
Nour arrived in the UK as a teenager, having been resettled with his family. Here he tells us about his hopes and fears when he found out he was moving to the UK, and what advice he would give to other teens being resettled.
“You can’t impose empowerment”
Community Sponsorship naturally attracts people who want to help others. You get involved because you want to help refugees in a practical way. But sometimes helping people can disempower them. So how do you empower newly arrived refugees rather than simply help them? Eveline, a Community Sponsor in Bristol, gives us her reflections on this question.
What is the difference between refugee sponsorship in Canada and the UK?
Professor Michaela Hynie from York University in Toronto has been studying refugee resettlement in Canada for over a decade. Canadians have privately sponsored more than 300,000 refugees. Here Professor Hynie reflects on her observations of the UK’s Community Sponsorship scheme and explains why the UK’s focus on community resettlement over family reunion can represent both a challenge and a strength of the UK model.
Six Big Moments: St Bartholomew’s and Friends Community Sponsorship Group in Rainhill
The St Bartholomew’s group welcomed a Syrian family to their area in July 2019. We talked to leaders Ged and Paul about big moments from the first part of their Community Sponsorship experience – from bringing people together to form a friendly, dynamic group to the long-awaited trip to Manchester Airport to meet the family.
60 seconds with… Carol, Community Sponsor, Exeter
Carol started volunteering with her local Community Sponsorship group, CHARIS Exeter, in 2018. Here she shares the toughest and best bits about Community Sponsorship and describes an emotional reunion at Exeter airport.
“You are creating a story that they will tell for the rest of their lives.”
Abdulrahman is a member of the Waltham Forest Community Sponsorship Partnership group. Here, he tells us how his own experience of coming to the UK has informed and inspired his volunteering.
“We felt safe”
When asked how he and wife Amira felt when they arrived in Northern Ireland in September 2019, Rashed simply says: “We felt safe.” The couple and their daughters were welcomed to Whitehead by the Small World Community Sponsorship Group. Here they share their memories of the first few days.
“Our duty to our neighbours beyond the UK will still exist when we emerge from this pandemic.”
Jackie McLoughlin, founder of the Sutton Deanery Community Sponsorship Group, was awarded Maundy Money in an 800-year-old tradition which sees people doing outstanding work in their communities recognised by the reigning monarch on Maundy Thursday. Jackie tells us what Community Sponsorship means to her and why she believes that more people should be sponsoring refugees.
“Now I realised the real greatness of community groups.”
Khalid, his wife and their four children settled in Cardiff in 2019. Before his first Ramadan in the UK, Khalid was worrying about what to expect. Here he explains how the experience was actually a breakthrough moment for him in feeling welcomed and supported.
“It was the first time we ever saw something like this.”
Amira, Rashed and their three daughters arrived in Northern Ireland in September 2019, where they were welcomed by the Small World Community Sponsorship group. With Christmas just a couple of weeks away we thought we would talk to Amira about her first Christmas in the UK. She shares her surprise at her daughters’ star turns and why she thinks getting involved in each other’s festivities is so important.