The London Churches Refugee Fund raises money to give small grants to organisations assisting destitute refugees and asylum-seekers.
We ask the agencies we support to provide case studies of how their work helps asylum seekers and refugees. Here we feature just one latest case.
Ms E first came to the Black Women’s Rape Action Project (BWRAP) self-help sessions after being encouraged by a friend. She was living scared of the Home Office, and didn’t understand the refusal letter she had been sent. Having fled Malawi in fear of her family who had abused her when they found she was having a relationship with another woman, she was terrified of being returned and could not believe she has been rejected. She was traumatised, couldn’t sleep, and didn’t have the confidence to speak for many months.
As she gradually opened up, BWRAP were able to give her practical support and advice.
In December 2017 Ms E announced that she had won her case and celebrated by singing triumphantly, backed up joyfully by her fellow members of the self-help group. She detailed how the self-help guide and sessions on writing a case summary and using the Gender Guidelines in an asylum claim were invaluable to her understanding, and preparing her case, and in convincing the judge to grant her asylum. At her hearing, more than 25 people crammed into court, and the judge was clearly impressed by her witnesses and supporters, many of whom were women from the self-help sessions. Keen for other women to learn their rights and how to stay on top of their own cases, she wanted her victory recorded and made available to inspire other women.
We are extremely grateful for the grant money you sent us. This money will help us to support our asylum-seeking clients who are very often in terrible need. (June 2019)
I want to thank you for the grant of £700 which will go towards our emergency support fund and phone cards for destitute ex-detainees living within Greater London. We are very grateful for this award as it will make a significant difference to alleviating the difficulties faced by our service users. (June 2019)