Hello! Hope you all had a fabulous Refugee Week and were able to get out and about and celebrate at some of the brilliant events that were happening across the city.
City of Sanctuary were involved in two events during Refugee Week, below is a little bit of information for those of you who couldn’t make it along to Fenham Library.
On Tuesday 18th June we held a lunchtime celebration event at Fenham Library. The event was open to all, seeking to engage with people who are seeking asylum and families who have been resettled in Newcastle under the VPRS.
There was free Middle Eastern food cooked by a number of individuals who have come to Newcastle through the resettlement scheme. The food was delicious, as always. The people who have been involved in this are keen to explore options to turn this into employment opportunities looking at options to set up a business or social enterprise going forward. This was a good chance to publicise their skills and drum up enthusiasm and support for the idea of taking this forward.
Sherriff Habib Rahman and his mother attended the event. Habib offered his welcome to people who are seeking sanctuary in Newcastle and handed out certificates during an award ceremony for the individuals who have been part of the cooking trials. Here he is talking about the event, the food and the contribution that refugees can make to Newcastle:
There were craft activities for children, run by the Library Service throughout the day. These were popular and allowed the Library to publicise some of the services they have on offer for families.
There were a variety of different “stalls” where different organisations can come along to promote their work to families and individuals. Representation from NERS, WERS, TWAM, Police, TWFRS, YHN, Freedom From Torture, Supported Employment, D6, JET, and Education Admissions Service. This was a good opportunity for asylum seekers and refugees to find out about different organisations and what support and opportunities are on offer in Newcastle, and for organisations to network.
There were approx. 100 people who attended the event throughout the day and the feedback from those involved was very positive:
“Thank you, you have made me feel welcome. I am feeling very happy after today.”
“I had a lovely time celebrating Refugee Week with City of Sanctuary. I especially enjoyed the awards ceremony and the delicious food made by the families. It was great meeting and telling people about Newcastle’s free museums and sharing dinosaur objects from the Great North Museum: Hancock.”
“Today was amazing – the chefs should be so proud of their efforts to make it so successful!”
Thanks to everyone who came along, got involved and helped to make the day such a success!