Getting settled into your new home is hard work. For the 4968 refugees resettled in the UK this year, it’s even harder. Thousands of miles from their birthplace and families, refugees face the reality of creating a home from scratch. So what can you do to help?
1. Provide Language Lessons
Some refugees speak perfect English but those who don’t can feel overwhelmed. Speaking English helps refugees integrate into the community and 91% of British adults agree. English language lessons provide access to education, companionship and employment. Despite this need, two-thirds of refugees think their level of English will be a barrier to work.
You can provide support by offering your time as a language teacher. You can also campaign by signing (or creating) a petition for refugees to get the language support they need to build their homes in the UK.
2. Help Find Work
Refugees struggle to get work with recent findings showing a 51% employment rate. This can happen due to incomplete education or unrecognised qualifications. With 1200 qualified refugee professionals on the British Medical Association’s database, it’s clear that refugees want to contribute to their new communities.
CV help, career coaching or direction to job opportunities are resources you can offer to provide support. They give refugees the chance to gain financial independence and be productive.
3. Donate Goods and Clothes
Refugees undertake difficult journeys to flee their countries. It gives them few opportunities to gather their belongings and they often leave with the clothes on their backs and little else.
From baby clothes to bikes, and from plates to phones, by donating your old possessions you help give refugees the freedom to set up their new homes.
4. Offer Companionship
The most effective way to help resettle a refugee is to offer friendship. Leaving their home country often results in the loss of friends and family. It is an isolating event.
Socialising with refugees helps them build the meaningful connections that make a place feel like home.
The support needed to help refugees is often dependent on the local community.
To make an offer to help that supports those in your local community, find out where you can help.
Celebrate #RefugeeWeek by making those in your community feel welcome!