The Justice and Peace Refugee Project continues to welcome hundreds of people who use our services every month, with new clients registering each week from many places in the world. Your continued donations of food, toiletries and finance are very welcome. Items most urgently needed can be found here.

In addition to these items, we also try to source fresh produce, which is gratefully received by our clients. Unfortunately, Lidl, one of our supermarket contributors, recently stopped supplying food to the project, so we are now in contact with FareShare to ensure that we are able to continue to provide fresh food items to our clients. FareShare is a national network of charitable food redistributors, made up of 18 independent organisations, which takes good quality surplus food from across the food industry to community groups and charities.

July sees a change at the Refugee Project as we bid farewell to Sarah, our Deputy Project Co-ordinator. Sarah has been a great asset to the project and we are grateful for her commitment and hard work during her time with us. She enjoyed her time working with all the volunteers at the project, and said that ‘it has been invaluable to learn about the lives of refugee and asylum seekers and to be made aware of the many challenges that people face just to survive.’ We wish Sarah all the very best in the future.

Many of our clients continue to face housing challenges. This includes clients who have had their appeals for asylum rejected and are destitute and also clients who have newly been given leave to remain and have been evicted from government accommodation. Our Project Co-ordinator has recently had meetings with Action Foundation in order to refer these clients for support. A member of Newcastle County Council also visits the project regularly to offer advice to clients who find themselves in this situation.

In addition to Refugee Week, which was celebrated at the project in June, National Volunteer Week also fell in this month. We currently have around 50 amazing volunteers who provide incredible support to one of the most vulnerable groups in society. We are extremely grateful for their dedication and invaluable contributions. Their hard work, compassion, and commitment make a significant impact, and we could not be more thankful for everything they do. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact our Project Co-ordinator.

The project had some very positive news this month. A significant challenge for our clients is the difficultly in affording the data and credit they need and volunteers are regularly asked if the project can provide SIM cards. We recently contacted an organisation called the Good Things Foundation which has agreed to provide the project with SIM cards. We are expecting to receive 50 SIM cards each month for the next 6 months. This will be of huge benefit to our clients.

We continue to rely on the generosity of individuals and parishes for donations for which we are incredibly grateful. We are thankful for and continue to rely on your generous financial support for our work. Details of our bank account (DHN Justice & Peace Refugee Project) can be found on our webpage. Please consider Gift-Aiding your donation, if possible, it makes a big difference. You can donate online (simply select the Gift Aid option when completing the online form) or download and submit a Gift-Aid Declaration form for a single or multiple donation. Visit our Donate and Gift Aid page now.

For more details about our work and how you can assist, please contact our Project Co-ordinator by email: jp.refugeeproject@diocesehn.org.uk or visit our webpage.

Our task must be to free ourselves – by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty

Albert Einstein