Unit 7 Hanley Business Park, Cooper Street, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent, ST1 4DW
In March 2022, YouGov polling found that 81% of the public support the right to work for people seeking asylum in the UK.
Men, women, and families seeking asylum are arriving in Stoke with little more than what they stand up in.
PLEASE HELP US TO SUPPORT THESE NEW ARRIVALS
We are short of CLOTHING, COFFEE, LONG LIFE MILK, SUGAR, BISCUITS, AND TOYS
You may deliver to Asha on:
Monday, Tuesday and Saturday 10.00-1.00 pm
Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 10.00-2.00 pm
THANK YOUCHILDREN SAY OFFICIALS PRESSURE THEM TO DECLARETHEY ARE OVER 18 The Guardian 1 November 2022
When unaccompanied youngsters arrive, immigration officers may randomly assess their age and underage children can end up living with adults which throws up all manner of safeguarding issues.
To establish a youngster’s age is the start of a time consuming and exhausting process involving the British Red Cross, an age-dispute solicitor, the accommodation provider, the Home Office, and Social Services who conduct an age assessment. It is only when the age of a youngster is acknowledged by the Home Office that the search for foster parents can begin.
Despite insisting he was 15 years old Mohammad (from Afghanistan) was placed in Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre where he caught scabies. He was then sent to a hotel in Crewe where Social Services assessed his age as 15 and he was fostered to an Asha volunteer. She introduced Mohammad to Asha and when Lydia heard his name. she recognized that she had been a caseworker in the chain of those sorting out his status.
Mohammad’s foster mother says: “He has obviously had a very traumatic time and still sleeps with the light on at night. However, he is doing well. He has English tuition four days a week and comes to Asha with me on Wednesdays. We have another Afghan lad living with us and they both speak Pashto. They cook together and attend the youth group at Asha on Tuesday nights. I’m hoping he will get into college/school in the New Year. He’s doing really well.”
Renae Mann, executive director of the Refugee Council said recently: “This autumn, our staff have seen an unprecedented and overwhelming number of unaccompanied refugee children who are identified by immigration officers as adults. We have recently supported 70 children living in one adult hotel and some were housed at Manston Migrant Centre.A SPOOKTACULAR OCCASION After successful trip to Gandy’s Circus in 2021, we were incredibly lucky to be offered an opportunity to take 50 members of our Asha families during the autumn half term break. Many families who attended last year wanted to go again, but this time we offered the trip to new families and families that missed out last year.
From the moment we arrived they were enthralled, sitting on the edge of their seats watching acrobats, daredevil motorbike stunts and fire jugglers. It was a great opportunity for parents and children alike to laugh, smile, be in awe and forget their worries for an afternoon.
WORKING WITH B’ARTS
Miriam reports: “We have recently been working with B Arts to create an ASHA Arts Youth Group. We now have an established group aged 12 to 18 who often feel a little ‘too old’ for the general ASHA children’s activities. They have enjoyed experimenting with clay, puppet making, acting and even a brilliant parkour and acrobatics session. A favourite session has been a music production, in which the young people had the opportunity to work alongside a professional music producer, recording their own sounds, melodies and lyrics and assembling the sounds to create their very own music track.
“It has been lovely to see the attendees grow in confidence and feeling secure enough to talk about and bond over shared struggles and day to day difficulties. We are planning to continue these sessions and create a well-established space dedicated to supporting the young people within this age bracket.”
#LiftTheBan: GIVE PEOPLE SEEKING ASYLUM THE RIGHT TO WORK What do a builder, a chef, an office worker, a scientist, a farmer, a care worker, and a teacher have in common? They are all subject to Home Office rules that freeze them out because they are seeking asylum.
The ban is harmful to everyone involved. Its toughest toll is on people seeking asylum, but the UK economy also misses out on tax revenue and leaves people wanting to work in limbo, their life on hold, their skills withering from lack of use. The time has come to #LiftTheBan
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T: Godfrey on 0742–900–7234 E: [email protected]–uk.org
T: Lydia on 0791–411–7440 E: [email protected]–uk.org
Charity Reg. No. 11769634 (England & Wales) Company No. CE013097