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After more than 350,000 people signed a petition asking the government to take in the country’s fair share of refugees, David Cameron told parliament the UK will welcome 20,000 refugees over the next five years. With so many people entering the country after fleeing their own homes, there’s a lot of work to be done in order to provide for these people. If you’d like to offer your support, here are a few ways you can help refugees arriving in the UK.
Whether you’re a designer, a fundraiser, or you speak another language, you may be able to help by becoming a mentor and providing one-to-one support for people seeking asylum.
To get started, get in touch with a charity such as Refugee Action to see how you can provide refugees with the support they need.
The Migrant Forum are also currently looking for new volunteers with a range of skills to help.
Although the government plans to accept 20,000 refugees into the country over the next five years, many have complained that it’s simply not enough. If you believe we need to welcome more refugees into the country, sign petitions you care about and contact your local council directly.
If you’d like to offer a home to a refugee or can provide a place for a family to live, register your interest via the Citizens UK campaign to find 5,000 landlords. In the first few days of the campaign, more than 500 landlords registered. Even if you don’t own a buy-to-let property, you still may be able to help by becoming a live-in-landlord and letting a refugee live with you.
With many refugees leaving their homes with little more than a bag on their back, donations are vital for those in refugee camps. CalAid has been working tirelessly to provide refugees in Calais with support, food and shelter. If you have tents, warm clothes, shoes, or sleeping bags, these can prove extremely valuable to refugees.
With David Cameron placing emphasis on bringing Syrian orphans into the country, hundreds of children are likely to be in need for a home. If you’d like to foster an unaccompanied child, Home for Good can help.
A makeshift library has been set up at the refugee camp in Calais and more books are needed, so if you were thinking of having a clear-out this could be the perfect opportunity to give your books to people who need them.
An Amazon wish list has been created to make it easier for people to donate the most needed supplies. The list includes a wide variety of items such as cut resistant kitchen gloves, hiking boots, biro pens and candles. By donating this way, you don’t need to worry about delivering the items yourself or arranging for them to be collected.
Let other people know how passionate you are about helping refugees when they enter the country. Whether you spread the word on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, you may be able to encourage other people to join the conversation and help refugees too.
With such a high number of Syrian refugees looking for safety, humanitarian aid agencies are under increasing pressure. If you can afford to donate money towards the charities striving to help refugees, there are various ways in which you can do so. Whether you send a text to make a one-off donation or set up a monthly direct debit to support your chosen charity, your money can help to make a real difference. Charities include MSF UK, the Aylan Kurdi Fund, Save the Children and Red Cross Europe.