Refugee Week began the same year as our own organisation, and it has always held a special place in our hearts. Some years we are able to mark it innovatively or extravagantly, and in other years our efforts have been more low-key.

Social media has made it very easy for us to demonstrate our passion and commitment towards supporting people who are seeking safety. This year we worked with our young volunteers to create content for a range of platforms – see our Instagram post here.

Earlier this year, the Blagrave Trust introduced us to Refugee Youth Service, a much-needed and most-welcome addition to our local/regional youth sector. We are grateful to them for referring young people to us – picking up two of the young people they support so that they could access our football session was one of the highlights of this year’s Refugee Week for us.

The Journeys Project

Refugee Week is also an opportunity to reflect on work from year’s gone by. In 2008 we delivered the Journeys project at Langley Heritage Primary School, formerly Parlaunt Park, a project funded by the National Lottery’s Awards for All programme. The project combined explorations of identity with social action. Year 6 pupils interviewed a dear friend of our organisation, Dereje, about his journey to the UK as a refugee.

The children reflected on Dereje’s feeling of lostness and anxieties over whether he would be welcome. They responded by creating a welcome letter and map, that would be distributed to all new clients by Slough Refugee Support. The children wrote every word and researched all aspects of the map. Their vision was translated into a beautiful design by Tina Palmer.

The project was rich with learning and meaningful outcomes. With venomous headlines about people fleeing persecution never far away, perhaps after fifteen years, it’s time to revisit this.

Welcome to Slough

Welcome to Slough