2022 has been another pitiless year for people seeking refugee protection in the UK. In mid-December the loss of four lives in the English Channel reminded us of the at times deadly price paid by those using dangerous routes to sanctuary in the UK, while the Government refuses to provide safer routes that are wider than its narrow resettlement schemes. News of the Rwanda deportation plan, now deemed legal, on top of continued hostile reporting in much of the print and broadcast media, continues to alarm and distress many on either side of the Channel. This year, our work has also taken place as part of a growing coalition of over 500 refugee organisations working for a kinder, fairer, more compassionate and effective approach to supporting refugees in the UK, through Together with Refugees.
With your help, our core programmes in Calais, Folkestone, Paris, London and Bristol offered mental health and wellbeing support to MORE THAN 2,000 adults and unaccompanied young people displaced due to conflict, persecution, poverty and climate emergency.
People who access our programmes have told us that sitting with others at The Community Table helps them feel less stressed, less isolated, and more grounded. Engaging in creative activity allows people, throughout the precarious process of seeking sanctuary, to access their imagination and be distracted from difficult thoughts. It allows them to share and preserve their skills, languages and histories, both cultural and personal. The Community Table helps them to cope better in the present and foster hope for the future.
Our core work is needed now more than ever. The colder, darker winter months exacerbate the challenges for those stuck on European borders, such as in Calais, and living in limbo in asylum accommodation in the UK. As a mobile outfit, we keep overheads to an absolute minimum. Any donations go towards direct programme delivery, and we depend on the generosity of our supporters to help fund this work. If you would like to set up a monthly standing order, a one-off payment, or your own fundraising activity please use this link: https://www.justgiving.com/artrefuge-uk
For BACS payment and international payments, please email: email@example.com
You can also sign up for these simple schemes which enable funds to go directly to Art Refuge from your online shopping:
Finally, we use our dynamic website https://www.artrefuge.org.uk and lively social media presence here and on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/artrefuge_/ to share our work.
Please look out for our 2022 achievements in our upcoming post, continue to follow us, share posts, discuss the issues, and join us as we work towards a fairer world in 2023!
WITH HEARTFELT THANKS AND ALL BEST WISHES
from Bobby Lloyd, our CEO, and all the trustees and team at Art Refuge.