We apologise for the long gap since letting you have news of our activities. We all know the reasons why. The past eighteen months have been difficult in terms of visiting and supporting the six Syrian families living in Richmond under the SVPR scheme, but we have been able to offer support with on-line and telephone English conversations, food parcels, sourcing much needed household items, etc.
We did successfully organise an actual “Let’s Meet Again” picnic at the beginning of September where all our families were able to get together again with some of our main volunteers. Anna had recruited a team of students from her school, who organised games for the younger children, and generally ensured that a good time was had by all. And of course, being Syrians, there was a lot of delicious food available.
News from the families
Two of our original families have now been here for nearly five years, so are applying for permanent residency, which we hope will be granted in November. Two families have moved houses, aided by the Council resettlement officers. However, we still desperately need two more properties: a) for a family looking for larger accommodation for their growing family, and b) for one of the families looking for permanent residence, as their lease will expire in November. So please keep us advised if you hear of anything suitable and contact Simone on the number below.
Latest on the Afghan situation
Thanks to private landlords who have offered properties, the Council are now preparing to welcome the first Afghan families to Richmond. RWinR is gearing up to offer these families the same community support that we have been providing to Syrian refugees for the past 5 years, so we need additional volunteers to help with befriending activities, practice speaking English, EFL teaching, homework support etc. If you are interested in helping to support an Afghan family when they arrive please email on the address below.
Also, if you wish to help the families directly, this can be done through the Afghanistan & Central Asia Association (acaa.org.uk), who are based in Feltham.
First of all, many thanks to Anna’s group, who as well as organising the picnic, raised £400 towards our funds. If we are to continue to support our original families, and start welcoming Afghan families, we do need to increase our bank balance. We will be organising some fundraising events, but in the meantime, if anyone wishes to donate, this can be done by using the button below.
In addition to any once-off or regular donation, you could support us financially by directing all your on-line shopping through the Easy Fundraising site by using the link below, where you can find thousands of retailers including Amazon, eBay, most supermarkets and many more reputable online and high street retailers who would donate a percentage of the value of your purchases without costing you any more than the normal payment.
Opportunities for volunteering
As you’re probably all aware, our organising committee are volunteers. As well as visiting and supporting the families, we also need good administrators. At the moment, we’re particularly looking for someone to help with dealing with requests from the families, and also general secretarial work.