Services

Asha offer a range of services at our base at Hanley Business Park. Below are just a few of them. Click on the subject below to find out more, or if you have any questions about any of our services, please contact us.

Food

Clothing

Household Items

Bicycles

Internet Access

Financial Assistance

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Tesco

Food

Asha began collecting food to give asylum seekers a little extra at Christmas. Before long asylum seekers began looking to Asha for help every week. Living on a limited income of £5.39 a day for an adult, the smallest crisis can leave an asylum seeker without cash. Members of the Women’s Group drew up a list of ‘survival’ items such as pasta, long grain rice, sunflower cooking oil, tinned tuna and tomatoes, pulses and sugar.

Today, a certain degree of rationing has become necessary. There are more asylum seekers who have no recourse to public funds and who are not allowed to work. They are a priority as are families who may suddenly face an unexpected expense or crisis.

With a widening circle of organisations, people and faith groups supporting Asha by donating food no-one in need is turned away although there are occasions when the food stock become perilously low.

Newcastle and Lichfield Food Banks give Asha food when they have a surplus and Tesco Fair Share Community Food Connection donate day old bakery products three times a week and sometimes they are able to include eggs, vegetables and even flowers.

Clothing

Asha likes to have a variety of good quality clothing for asylum seekers who are newly arrived and for others who may have very little. Anything which fails to live up to the mark is bagged a donated to a local hospice. Good shoes are also in demand especially in winter when too often an asylum seeker only has a pair of worn and leaky trainers.

On average Asha gives out 150-200 items of clothing a week.

Household items, bedding and linen Asha can always find a home for good saucepans, kettles, toasters, irons and ironing boards, cutlery, linen and towels.

Donors are generous in passing on toys and books. We ask that toys be nearly new but no donation is wasted. Gifts which Asha may not find a home for are given to a local hospice.

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Financial Help

Now that Asha’s Support Worker, Lydia Mugoyikaze, is a qualified British Red Cross Support Worker she can bring her expertise to bear by advocating with the Department of Work and Pensions on behalf of an asylum seeker who now has been granted refugee status but for whom there may be a delay in receiving Job Seeker’s Allowance.

Integration Fund – Most of Asha’s users live in outlying neighbourhoods and have no money for transport, many who are mothers with babies or toddlers. Asha raises money for mothers and their children to attend the women and children’s clubs. This lessens their social isolation and paves the way for a user to engage with activities and community events on their doorstep.

Emergency Fund  Asha has an emergency fund for special payments like, for example, providing a train ticket for a destitute asylum seeker to travel to Liverpool or Birmingham to lodge a fresh claim or assist a mother to purchase nappies for her new baby while waiting for a payment from the Home Office.

It is Asha’s donors who sustain the above funds. Without them Asha would not be able to help asylum seekers to access the centre or to have somewhere to turn in a crisis or an emergency.

Emergency Fund – Asha has an emergency fund for special payments like, for example, providing a train ticket for a destitute asylum seeker to travel to Liverpool or Birmingham to lodge a fresh claim or assist a mother to purchase nappies for her new baby while waiting for a payment from the Home Office.

It is Asha’s donors who sustain the above funds. Without them Asha would not be able to help asylum seekers to access the centre or to have somewhere to turn in a crisis or an emergency.

Internet Access

Most asylum seekers are unfamiliar with the internet and using email and this is often an immigration advisors primary means of communication. It is important that asylum seekers remain in contact with their immigration advisor and Asha is able to help an asylum seeker become familiarised with email and the internet. Children also enjoy using computers at Asha’s children’s club.

Asha welcomes donated, working computers and can guarantee that these will be put into good use for asylum seekers.

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Bicyclespink bike

Asha collects donated bicycles and asylum seekers refurbish these to make them roadworthy before they are given to an asylum seeker.

The gift of mobility is deeply valued and there is always a waiting list. 

Every cyclist should have a crash helmet and a padlock so please donate these as well if you have them.

Asha distributes over 50 bicycles a year and although there is usually an asylum seeker ready to refurbish old bikes this is not always this case and Asha would welcome some local volunteers to help.

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