Refugee Week Themed 'Welcome'

As Refugee Week approaches, with its theme this year of ‘Welcome’, at Suffolk Refugee Support we are preparing to greet the next Syrian families to arrive in Ipswich as part of the UK government’s resettlement programme.

We are making sure their accommodation is comfortably furnished, and will support and orientate them upon their arrival. Most importantly, we will provide a warm and welcoming environment in which they can take the first small steps towards rebuilding their lives.

We have also been working intensively with the first Syrian families who made their new homes in Ipswich earlier this year, and they are settling in well with our support and that of the wider community.

Suffolk Refugee article image

One of the Syrians we are supporting is an instructive example of the benefits of investing in refugees. The son of one family was three years into a four year Physics degree when the war in Syria forced them to flee. His studies, and indeed his life, have been on hold since, but we are working hard to help him improve his English (already pretty good!) so that he can gain the language qualification he needs to be able to resume his studies. With the shortage of scientists in this country, the initial investment of time and resources in this young man will surely be repaid many times over.

Of course, although a lot of attention is focused on Syria, there are myriad situations of conflict and oppression worldwide contributing to current record levels of
displacement. At Suffolk Refugee Support, we continue to see people from a range of countries and backgrounds – including Christians persecuted for their beliefs. With funding uncertainties on the horizon, we are more reliant than ever on the generosity and compassion of individual donors and church and community groups.

We are a grass-roots, independent charity, with no layers of management or inflated CEO salaries, which has earned the trust of the refugee communities of Ipswich over the last 17 years through hard work and integrity. Therefore, you can be assured that any donation we receive – whether it go towards study books or school uniforms for newly-arrived Syrians, or travel to solicitors appointments for clients for whom access to good legal advice can make all the difference – will help to improve the lives of vulnerable refugees in Suffolk.

Forthcoming events to look out for:

Suffolk Refugee Support summer newsletter – We will be sending this out over the next week, with updates on all our work. If you would like to be added to our mailing list to receive this, please contact Martin:

Refugee Week (20-26 June) – There will be a special screening of the film ‘Welcome’ at Ipswich Film Theatre on Monday 20 June at 7.30pm. Also look out for
coverage and interviews – including the story of a Syrian refugee – in the Ipswich Star and on BBC Radio Suffolk, and on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Harmony & Soul concert (2 July) – a special benefit concert featuring Suffolk Soul Singers, The VIPs (men’s harmony chorus) and Acafella (barbershop quartet) at St Matthew’s Church to raise funds for refugees. Tickets available from the parish office (Adults £8, Children £4) on 01473 251630 or by email:

SRS Open Day – a chance to meet our team and some of the refugees we help and learn more about our work – date and full details to be confirmed soon.

Network Administrator, 15/06/2016
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