In recent months many constituents have asked me about what we can do here in Bristol to help refugees. I’m pleased that there is such a willingness to support people in desperate situations to have a better life. Here are some of the ways you can help:

●     Donate – clothes, household goods (for setting up home), food, money, time. There are good refugee organisations in Bristol who need your help: Bristol Hospitality Network, Bristol Refugee Rights, Borderlands, City of Sanctuary.

●     Foster – Bristol City Council badly needs more foster families for unaccompanied child refugees. You can find out more on the Council’s website.

●     Provide a home – if you have space in your home for a refugee, there are lots of single adults who need somewhere to live, at least for temporary basis. Once they have been granted asylum they have 28 days to leave the NASS accommodation – you could help bridge the gap between that and their permanent home. Contact Bristol Hospitality Network’s Rachael Bee for more info.

●     Raise money – all refugee organisations need more money. A regular monthly donation (standing order) is best, so they can plan reliably.

●     Campaign and raise awareness – talk with your own family, your neighbours, friends and colleagues about the refugee crisis. There are 23.1 million refugees worldwide and most go to neighbouring countries. We take a tiny proportion. The neighbouring countries need our help – they are low income countries.

If you have questions about any of this, please don’t hesitate to contact my office.

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