As we move into March, the Justice and Peace Refugee Project continues to receive large numbers of clients using our services, with new clients registering every week. In January we received 43 new registrations, with many people from Iraq, Iran, Eritrea and Namibia. We have clients from all parts of the globe, with world events impacting where our clients come from at different times. There are over 100 countries represented on our list of current and previous clients.

It may interest you to know that the Refugee Project was established in 2001, so has been providing support for some of the most basic needs of those seeking asylum and refuge in the local community for many years. Our clients are people who are making a claim to stay in Britain because of fear of conditions and persecution in their home country. We support individuals and families in their time of extreme financial hardship and instability. The warm welcome they receive with us can offer some hope in otherwise extremely difficult circumstances.

In addition, we offer:

  • Weekly food bags and
  • Access to second hand clothing, footwear, homeware and other essential items.
  • A place to socialise and access free Wi-Fi.
  • English lessons and occasional
  • Signposting to other sources of

We are fortunate to operate out of the same premises as the St Vincent de Paul Society, as this allows us to work closely in partnership with them to benefit our clients. Recently, some of our clients have expressed great gratitude for the household items and essential items for children, such as prams, which have been provided by the SVP. The SVP also support our volunteers by providing information about local services and organisations which can assist our clients.

The Refugee Project depends on the hard work and dedication of volunteers, who give their time and energy to the project operations, either working face-to-face with our clients on Wednesdays and Fridays, or by working behind the scenes on Mondays on preparing food and toiletries to be distributed. We currently have 54 volunteers and they are very much the backbone of the project. We always welcome new volunteers. Volunteers receive the appropriate Safeguarding training and a DBS check is required. If you are interested, please contact our Project Co-ordinator.

Of course, the Refugee Project is wholly reliant on the generosity of individuals, donors and parishes for donations. Parish representatives champion the project in their parishes and facilitate food collections and deliveries to the project, for which we really are most grateful. Items most urgently needed can be found here.

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. There is a Gift-Aid Declaration form for a single donation available here or for multiple donations available here.

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.

Please be aware that the project will not be open to clients on Good Friday, 29 March or for deliveries on Easter Monday, 1 April.

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