In a world where the dominant narrative regarding refugees, asylum seekers or vulnerable migrants is one of disdain and distrust, celebratory coverage gets lost in the hurricane of hate.
It is therefore important that media highlights the stories of hope and resilience, such as the upcoming project taking place in The Lauries Centre in the Wirral, Merseyside on Monday 9 March 2020.
The display will run in the afternoon to showcase projects that have been fortunate enough to receive small grants specifically aimed at supporting refugees, asylum seekers or vulnerable migrants in Wirral.
Issues such as employment, a sense of belonging, rebuilding a life and becoming part of a new community can be seen across the variety of projects.
The projects such as the one in Wirral are incredibly important not just to the refugee and asylum-seeking community but the UK as a whole
Residents of Wirral who are refugees, asylum seekers and vulnerable migrants are especially encouraged to visit the centre to see what is possible, potentially make new connections and become further informed of supportive services for their needs.
The projects such as the one in Wirral are incredibly important not just to the refugee and asylum-seeking community but the UK as a whole. Asylum seekers are struggling with the UK’s punishing asylum system as it barely allows them to survive.
Refugees may be granted leave to remain status, meaning they are allowed to stay in the UK for at least five years, but they also face hardship.
£37.75 per week […] is not enough to live on, let alone start a ‘rainy day’ fund
Once granted permanent status, refugees have a chaotic 28-day rush to find new accommodation as they are no longer eligible for their assigned asylum-seeking housing support. Of course, they are in no position to be able to afford a house, flat or room deposits that so many landlords require these days seeing as they would have been living on the asylum-seeking support allowance of £37.75 per week which is not enough to live on, let alone start a ‘rainy day’ fund.
Such an aggressively fast policy means many refugees, at what should be a time where they can finally breathe and feel some safety for the first time in what is often a very long time, are homeless and vulnerable. It is therefore easy to empathise with what it means to people to be able to find the support that helps them access their new local communities and potential employment for those with leave to remain status.
Refugee Week falls in June every year nationwide with events already shaping up to take place later this summer.
The average Briton can’t fully know the experience of a refugee or asylum seeker, but the vast majority should be able to relate
Refugee Week states its aim is to “provide an important opportunity for asylum seekers and refugees to be seen, listened to and valued.”
The average Briton can’t fully know the experience of a refugee or asylum seeker, but the vast majority should be able to relate to the frustration, sadness and fear that comes with feeling invisible, unheard and misunderstood for various reasons. We can welcome those who experience this alongside horrific racism, xenophobia and extreme hostility from the Government and say: we see you, we hear you and we value you.