RCO e-news - Refugee Council
November 5, 2010

RCO e-news

Special announcement
Refugee Council SCORES Project Conference
25 November 2010, 10am – 4.30pm, the Resource Centre, London, FREE
The Refugee Council’s Development Team is hosting the SCORES project London Conference on the role of sport and physical activity and how sport can be used as a framework for social change. A series of panels and participatory workshops will cover a broad range of topics and participants will have the opportunity to network with colleagues and talk to funders face to face. Funded by the Football Foundation, the Supporting Community Organisations Refugees Engage in Sports (SCORES) project is a three-year project, which aims to increase participation of refugees in sports. For more information email Ezechias.ngendahayo@refugeecouncil.org.uk 


Leading refugee charities publish report criticising payment card for asylum seekers

The Refugee Council, the Scottish Refugee Council, the Welsh Refugee Council, and the North of England Refugee Service (NERS) have published a new report looking at the Azure card, which was introduced at the end of 2009 to replace the use of supermarket vouchers for refused asylum seekers unable to return to their country. Your inflexible friend: the cost of living without cash highlights a range of problems caused by having to use the card, including families being unable to buy enough food to feed themselves. To read the full report visit www.refugeecouncil.org.uk/news/archive/press/2010/november/051110_press_release_Azure_card 

Refugee Council welcomes questioning of security firm after the death of Angolan refugee

Following the death of Jimmy Mubenga during a deportation flight in October, the Home Affairs Select Committee have questioned security firm G4S. Jonathan Ellis, Director of Policy and Development at the Refugee Council, said “We are deeply troubled by the recent growing quantity of reports about the inappropriate use of force by immigration and security officials, during deportations and also in detention in the UK.” To read the full response visit www.refugeecouncil.org.uk/news/archive/press/2010/november/20101102-Home-Affairs-Select-Commitee-Jimmy-Mubenga 

Mental health charity Mind launches Care in Crisis campaign

Mind is calling for evidence to be submitted to its independent inquiry investigating the state of mental health services. Mind will use this evidence to campaign for improved care and are particularly keen to include the perspectives of refugee, asylum and migrant communities. If you have experience of any aspect of mental health care, including service users, staff, providers, advisers and advocates, please complete the online survey at www.surveymonkey.com/s/V2GJCBY or for more information email action@mind.org.uk.

Voices of Courage Awards 2011 – “Urban Refugees”

Each year the Women’s Refugee Commission honours individual refugee, internally displaced and asylum-seeking women and young people who are working on behalf of their peers. Candidates should be developing or leading programmes that benefit displaced or asylum-seeking people living in urban areas. Successful candidates will receive a $5,000 grant from the Women’s Refugee Commission. For more information visit www.womensrefugeecommission.org/component/content/article/1065-call-for-nominations  

Please email your nomination to luncheon@wrcommission.org by November 30 2010.


Big Lottery Fund – Reaching Communities

Reaching Communities funds projects that help people and communities who are most in need, and can really make a difference. Projects can be new or existing activities, or be the core work of your organisation. Grants of £10,000 – £500,000 are available. For more information visit www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/prog_reaching_communities_improvements.pdf or email general.enquiries@biglotteryfund.org.uk 

Clothworkers’ Foundation grants

The Clothworkers’ Foundation small grants programme is open to UK registered charities with an annual turnover under £250,000 who are applying for a grant of between £500 and £10,000 for capital costs. Applications must fall under one of the following areas: encouragement of young people, social inclusion, the elderly, people with disabilities. For more information visit www.clothworkers.co.uk/Grant-Making/Overview.aspx 

Friends Provident Foundation (UK) 

The Friends Provident Foundation makes grants of up to £200,000 to not-for-profit organisations for projects that address financial exclusion within disadvantaged communities. Requests for capital or revenue funding, core funds or project costs will all be considered. For more information visit www.friendsprovidentfoundation.org/page.asp?section=119&sectionTitle=Application+timetable+for+the+Financial+Inclusion+programme 

Closing date for applications: 11 February 2011

Training and resources

Refugee Council: Business Start up
24 November 2010 – Birmingham
FREE (travel expenses and child care costs reimbursed and lunch provided)

This Financial Literacy Project training will provide an introduction to setting up in business and to becoming self-employed for refugees and asylum seekers. The training will be delivered by Angela McLean, highly successful and experienced entrepreneur and trainer. For more information or to book a place email karla.mclaren@refugeecouncil.org.uk

Refugee Council: Social Enterprise for Communities
26 November 2010 – Birmingham
FREE (travel expenses and child care costs reimbursed and lunch provided)

This Financial Literacy Project training will provide practical information for individuals and refugee community organisations interested in setting up a social enterprise, in particular: organisational models; sources of revenue; planning and setting up a social enterprise. This training will be delivered by Social Enterprise London. For more information or to book a place email karla.mclaren@refugeecouncil.org.uk

Welcome to Birmingham website

This website is a great resource for people who are new to the West Midlands. It offers information about life in the UK and about local areas specifically. Information can be searched by topic or by locality. For more information visit www.welcometobirmingham.org.uk/

FREE support for organisations using volunteers

Experts in Volunteering are working in partnership with Volunteer Centres across London to provide an increased level of support around volunteer management. Organisations can sign up to the London Volunteer Management Charter, and will have the opportunity to access one to one support, training, resources, and action learning sets all for FREE. To find out more visit www.expertsinvolunteering.org.uk/web/charter, or contact your local Development Worker: www.expertsinvolunteering.org.uk/web/contact.

Can your RCO offer catering and/or training room? 

Refugee Council’s Basis project is planning a series of events and training in London between January and September 2011. We would like to make the most of RCOs’ facilities and ensure money can come back into the sector where possible. If you are an RCO and can provide catering for events and training, or have a room that could be used for training, please contact carol.barker@refugeecouncil.org.uk indicating whether you can offer catering or a training venue, or both.

FREE tools for organisational development

NAVCA have produced various tools to support small organisations to develop. Examples include: agreeing a mission, recruiting workers, improving governance. For more information visit www.navca.org.uk/services/learningopps/skild/tools/list.htm   


Islington Refugee Forum meeting
9 November 2010, 10am – 12pm

The theme of this meeting is Sustainability and Income Generation, and includes speakers from the London rebuilding society and the European Council on refugees and Exiles (ENCRE). Additionally Gaynor Humphreys will discuss London funders and funding opportunities for refugee organisations. For more information visit www.islingtonrefugeeforum.org or email info@islingtonrefugeeforum.org

Ipswich: Starting a Social Enterprise
10 November 2010, 10am – 4pm

This one-day training, provided by the Basis project, will give practical knowledge of the issues involved for community groups while starting a social enterprise. This session is aimed at community organisations and will include looking at: common characteristics of social enterprises; the differences between a social enterprise and a charity; popular legal structures for social enterprises – and much more! For more information and to book a place please email shpetim.alimeta@refugeecouncil.org.uk

Birmingham: Meeting with Lloyds TSB Foundation’s Grant Manager
11 November 2010, 11am – 1pm

Peter Cunnison, Grant Manager for the Lloyds TSB Foundation, will be visiting the NISHCAM Centre (attached to the Sikh Temple), giving refugee community organisations the opportunity to find out the criteria for making funding applications to Lloyds TSB Foundation. Questions can be asked directly to the Grants Manager who deals with applications. If you would like to attend please contact, by 9 November 2010, david.hirst@refugeecouncil.org.uk or Dennis Minnis at dennis@newcommunities.org.uk

APPG meeting on Refugees
15 November 2010, 5pm – 6pm

The Refugee Council welcomes participation by RCOs at the next All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) meeting on Refugees that will focus on the Asylum Improvement Project – an opportunity for you to influence politicians. Speakers include Emma Churchill, Head of Asylum, UK Border Agency and Donna Covey, Chief Executive, Refugee Council. The event will be chaired by Julian Huppert MP. Due to high demand the location of the meeting has changed and it will now take place in the Grand Committee Room (off Westminster Hall), Palace of Westminster. Please RSVP to parliamentary@refugeecouncil.org.uk

Eide celebrations
18 November 2010, 3.30pm – 7.30pm

This Afghanistan and Central Asian Association event will celebrate Eid, an important festival celebrated by Muslims worldwide. It will be a good opportunity to come together and share knowledge, views and opinion and discuss the best way to contribute to society. For more information contact Dr Nooralhaq Nasimi on info@afghanistan-asian.org.uk or visit www.afghanistan-central-asian.org.uk  

Nottingham: The role of faith communities and faith based organisations to refugees and sanctuary seekers
20 November 2010, 9.45am – 4pm, FREE (lunch provided)

This event aims to facilitate dialogue that explores the role of faith in the asylum system; and how faith communities and organisations can offer refugees and asylum seekers support. This event will also showcase the work of African Women Empowerment International (AWEI), working with African women and children living with HIV. For more information visit www.awef.org.uk/cms/

Newcastle: Reclaiming the Domestic Violence Agenda
27 and 28 November 2010, Northumbria University, Newcastle
£50 voluntary sector, £100 public / private sector, FREE limited places for activists / small voluntary organisations

An international conference for all who are responsible and committed to addressing issues faced by Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic survivors of domestic violence. This will be a unique opportunity to hear world renowned activists. For more information visit www.angelou-centre.org.uk

Asylum Support Appeals Project AGM and destitution awareness day
8 December 2010, 1pm – 5pm, FREE (lunch provided)

This event will focus on support for refused asylum seekers. It will highlight new ASAP research on the high number of asylum seekers wrongly denied support by the UK Border Agency on the grounds that they are not destitute; examine key issues for the future of section 4 support in the light of the Asylum Improvement Project; provide a first hand account on the first year of the full time Duty Scheme by barristers and solicitors working pro bono for ASAP at the asylum sup-port tribunal. For more information email oliver@asaproject.org.uk


Basis Project Organisational Development Officer
£27,945, maternity cover (up to 1 year)

Through this Basis Project role you will work closely with RCOs in the South East. An excellent communicator with experience of delivering training, you have a proactive analytical approach and an understanding of Refugee Communities. For more information visit www.refugee-action.org/jobs or call 020 7832 1682, quoting reference RA606.

Closing date for applications: 15 November 2010

Refugee Home School Support Project (RHSSP) Bilingual Project Worker (Pashto & Dari or Somali)
£27,945 pro rata (incl. ILW), 12 hours per week

RHSSP is a successful project which has been working with children and families from refugee backgrounds since 2004. RHSSP would like to employ a project worker who speaks either Pashto and Farsi or Somali. The successful applicant will be based in a local secondary school working with children in years 10 and 11 over three days of the week. For more details about the role please email refugeeproject@klsettlement.org.uk  

Deadline for applications: 16 November 2010

Help on Your Doorstep part-time Advice Worker
£12,250 per annum (17.5 hours per week)

This is an excellent opportunity for a motivated candidate with experience in advice and guidance or community outreach work to work on a pro
ject that can make real improvements to the lives of local people in the Canonbury area of Islington. You will have excellent verbal communication skills and be confident in working with local residents and a wide range of partner agencies. To apply email admin@helponyourdoorstep.com   

Deadline for applications: 22 November 2010

Help on Your Doorstep Team Leader
£30,000 pa, maternity cover

The post holder will be responsible for the line management of four Connect Advisers and will oversee service delivery in two Connect areas. As well as having excellent verbal communication skills and being confident working with local residents and a wide range of partner agencies, you will have the ability to lead and support teams. To apply email admin@helponyourdoorstep.com   

Deadline for applications: 22 November 2010

Show refugees you believe in them this winter

This winter thousands of refugee men, women and children are rebuilding their lives in the UK, will you show you believe in them?