Social Inclusion, Housing and Benefit Advice, Elder Healthcare, Dementia Support, Culture and Heritage, Passport and All Things Irish Help and Advice, Family Support, Volunteering and Befriending, St Anne’s Club
Birmingham Irish Association is the Midlands’ leading charity providing support and cultural services to the Irish community. Our aspiration is to be the service of choice for all Irish people seeking advice, support and information. To achieve this we provide quality and responsive services that improve wellbeing and quality of life. We are based in the Heart of the Irish Quarter in Digbeth, Birmingham
We provide support and advice to Czech & Slovak communities. Organise cultural, social and educational events to promote and share the values and traditions that the Czechs and Slovaks bring to the UK
Our main aims are to:
-work in partnership with other community groups and local authorities to seek solutions to the barriers and problems encountered by the Czech and Slovak communities in the UK -keep the unique culture and values of the Czech and Slovak community that lives in the UK by organizing Folk dance lessons for adults & children, one-off events such as concerts, theatre performances, balls, sport competitions, story telling events and puppet shows for children -engage with the wider British public in these events and promote and share the values and traditions that the Czechs and Slovaks bring to the UK -maintain the school and nursery for children who wish to learn and speak Czech or Slovak and to preserve their heritage and identity -establish an education centre teaching Czech and Slovak language to adults
EU Settlement Scheme support, Central and Eastern European
Centrala is a non-profit organisation that has been supporting Central and Eastern European migrants in Birmingham since 2009. Our main objectives are migrant empowerment, improving integration and community cohesion. Our wide range of activities include: – Support with applications to the EU Settlement Scheme – Cultural events – Arts & Exhibitions – Campaigns and information
Volunteering, Welcome and support to refugees and asylum seekers arriving into Birmingham, Weekly activities, Visits, Welcome Boxes
Our aim is to welcome newly arrived refugees into Birmingham. We have trained volunteers ready to visit and welcome refugees as they first arrive in assisting them to settle within the community, particularly within the first three months. During this time, we aim to help refugees become independent, empowering them to feel at home and find a place to belong.
Gifting of practical items such as clothes, food, shoes, toiletries, books and English lessons
St Chad’s Sanctuary is a place of welcome for asylum seekers and refugees. We give out clothing, food, toiletries and other practical items as well as providing English lessons and help with questions.
Immigration Advice, Information, Advice and Support on Benefits, Housing, Health, Education, Employment for asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants, Befriending activities, Leisure activities, Homework Club for children, Youth Club for Unaccompanied Asylum seeking children, Destitution Support.
Entraide is an established charity based in Chelmsley Wood (Solihull Council). Our aims are to support asylum seekers, refugees and other vulnerable migrants living in Solihull and the surrounding area in order to facilitate their integration into society. We are currently the only refugee specialist organisation in Solihull and support around 500 clients a year from 30 different countries of origin. We are regulated by the Office of Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) to provide advice at Level 1 Immigration, Asylum & Protection and provide a wide change of services to refugees and other vulnerable migrants. Please visit our website: www.entraideuk.org.uk for more information.
Geographical area covered
Solihull and the wider Greater Birmingham area (Birmingham, Sandwell, Dudley, Walsall, etc.)
Support for Romanian speaking nationals for integration, cultural events, networking and provides a Saturday school for children
Romani Uniti din Anglia or, more simply, RUDA NGO in Birmingham was created from the need to share cultural values of Romanian community and create cohesion with the international communities in Birmingham.
We offer translation support, CV development and job seeker assistance for the Romanians who arrive in Birmingham in difficult situations.
We are also organizing cultural events in English and Romanian for the international community of Birmingham so to share our rich cultural values and heritage and reduce the stereotypes that Romanians might encounter.
Advice, Guidance and Information, Arts, Heritage and Culture, Sports and Leisure, Campaigning and Lobbying
The Midlands Vietnamese Refugee Community Association ( MVRCA ) is the main Vietnamese community organisation in Birmingham and West Midlands Region. It was established in 1982 and was originally based at 111 Church Hill Road Handsworth and relocated at 8 Charleville Road, Handsworth Birmingham in 1990.
The main service currently provided by the MVRCA are:
General welfare advice
Housing Benefits and Council Tax
Saturday Supplementary School including mother tongue teaching, run in conjunction with the Vietnamese Pastoral Centre at 10 Wye Cliff road, Handsworth, Birmingham
Elderly Club including Tai Chi and Elderly luncheon-on Club every Saturday
Organise Culture Festivities (Mid-Autumn Festival. New Year Festival)
Work with asylum seekers and refugee communities in North West Birmingham
We aim to build the confidence of newly arrived migrants, helping them to stand on their own feet and participate in UK society. This support has enabled some to join with other members of their community to form their own organisations. One of our priorities is encouraging their engagement with the long-established host communities, the majority of whom are of Irish, Caribbean and South Asian heritage.
We offer benefits, employment, housing and debt advice on a drop-in basis.
Immigration Advice is available on site on a sessional basis. We are involved in a significant partnering relationship with Handsworth College and other local organisations to develop a Peoples’ Heritage Centre celebrating the area’s diversity.
Craft sessions and opportunities for women through Zoom (during lockdown), or weekly Friday sessions
Shelanu, which means ‘belonging to us’, is a collective of migrant and refugee women working with Craftspace (a craft development organisation), to develop craft skills, confidence and well-being. You can learn design processes and creative skills from professional makers in a friendly and safe environment. Members use the skills they learn to produce high quality craft for sale inspired by their new home, the city of Birmingham and their experiences of migration.
Local Welcome meals brings together refugees, people seeking sanctuary and local people from Birmingham to cook and eat a meal on Sundays. Meals are an opportunity for local people to welcome refugees to Birmingham, and for refugees to make connections and new friends.
They take place on Sundays from 12.30pm-2.30pm in a community hall in Highgate (although people are welcome from all over the city). Everyone prepares food together, eats together and cleans up together. You start cooking with strangers, and end up eating with friends 🙂
Meals are for everyone seeking sanctuary, not matter what their immigration status is.
Children are welcome with an adult. Adults need a ticket to attend, people can refer themselves, or be referred, using the website address provided.
Conversational and accredited ESOL, Life & Living Skills, English, Numeracy, Literacy, ICT, education & career advice.
From its inception in March 1984 B.E.E.A.S has been responsible for teaching in various venues across the City.
We provide guidance and advice on education and training, bilingually where required. Assist in enhancing employability and access to training. Signpost to other services. Promote health and recreational programmes.
BEEAS also offers Pre-Entry English classes to enable learners to start informally before joining our nationally accredited courses. All learners are supported with job plans and career aspirations. BEEAS is a well – established organisation, whose purpose is to help adults from local communities particularly but not exclusively in the inner-ring areas of Lozells, Newtown, Aston, Alum Rock, Saltley and Nechells.
Educational Mentoring, Wellbeing support, Education access support for Unaccompanied Asylum-Seeking Children.
We help refugee and asylum-seeking children and young people to build more hopeful futures through education. We provide a range of services which help 14-25 year olds seeking safety in the UK to get into, stay in and do well in education. Educational mentoring We recruit, train and support community volunteers to provide weekly 1:1 educational mentoring – a blend of EAL tutoring and wellbeing support – to young refugees and asylum seekers. Visit the educational mentoring page to find out more. We prioritise young people who are already in education, helping them set and work towards their educational goals (such as improving their written English or passing a particular exam). We deliver this programme through local mentoring hubs across London, Oxford, Birmingham and the East of England, overseen by mentoring coordinators whose names and contact details can be found here. Specialist education and wellbeing support We provide long-term (1 year +), holistic support to young asylum seekers and refugees, helping them explore and pursue sustainable pathways back into education. Visit the specialist education and wellbeing support page to find out more. We prioritise those with mental ill health, survivors of trauma, young people who are NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training) or at risk of withdrawing from or being excluded from education. We work with young people to build resilience and emotional wellbeing and to address core foundational challenges to educational progression such as protracted immigration applications, homelessness and housing, poverty, welfare and benefits, access to health and other essential services, building confidence in understanding and asserting rights and entitlements. Access to higher education We support young asylum seekers and refugees who have the academic potential to attend university but who face challenges in doing so because of practical and immigration status-related barriers. Visit the access to higher education page to find out more. We run a specialist email and WhatsApp advice service, helping young people understand their options, entitlements, barriers and opportunities as they move towards university. We provide bespoke, face-to-face support to young people at different stages of their journey towards higher education: from young people in school or FE who want to identify appropriate progression pathways to those applying to university who need help with the process or answers to specific questions. We run workshops for young people who want to explore and understand the journey towards higher education. Innovation stream Our new three year strategy has introduced an innovation stream, enabling us to respond with dynamism and flexibility to the evolving needs of the young people we serve. The current focus of this stream is our values-based youth leadership programme. Our values-based youth leadership programme helps young refugees and asylum seekers identify their strengths and uniquenesses as leaders, encouraging them to grow as ‘servant leaders’ in their communities and spheres of influence. Our 8 week leadership course takes place twice a year, with weekly sessions comprising presentations by course facilitators, group discussions and journaling and reflection times. Alumni of the youth leadership course are invited to periodic events with RSN and other partner organisations in order to continue giving them opportunities to grow in confidence and leadership skills. The course is primarily aimed at young people we are already working with through our other programmes, though some referrals are accepted from partner organisations. Research, consultancy, training Alongside our direct work with young people, we undertake research and consultancy and provide training, ensuring that the voices of young refugees and asylum seekers are heard by the policy- and decision-makers who affect their lives.
Professional arts therapies & therapeutic arts in health & wellbeing workshops
The Birmingham Centre for Arts Therapies (BCAT) is a registered charity which was set up in 1993 to provide an accessible arts therapies and arts in health service throughout the Midlands.
We assist children and adults who are experiencing mental health, physical, behavioural or emotional issues with arts therapies, and we also work closely with our community partners across Birmingham to support the health and wellbeing of citizens using art, dance, drama, music and play.
We run specific projects for children with English as an Additional Language needs, and their families funded by the Community Fund.
Hosting, UASC befriending, Family Meet & Greet Service
Birmingham Community Hosting Network is a volunteer led charity working to harness the enthusiasm of local people to offer friendship and hospitality to people seeking sanctuary in the Birmingham area.
We were first established in 2011 as a hosting network aiming to relieve the destitution of asylum seekers whose support and accommodation from the Home Office has been cut off. We have supported a growing network of amazing volunteer hosts to provide accommodation to individuals experiencing destitution in their journey through the asylum process. Since then, BIRCH has grown to incorporate a further two projects. The Family Befriending Project supports local volunteer families to befriend young refugees aged 16-21 who have come to the UK alone, usually as unaccompanied minors.
The Meet and Greet caters for families with children in who have recently arrived in the country, offering welcome, friendship and activities to overcome isolation. Much of our work is currently effected by the Covid-19 pandemic and services are not currently able to operate in their usual way.
Legal, Housing, Financial Support for Refused Asylum Seekers
Hope Projects helps homeless asylum seekers to challenge flawed refusals of asylum and so escape destitution for good. We offer legal assessments to ensure that those refused asylum understand why they have been refused and what steps they can take to challenge this.
Housing for homeless asylum seekers whose refusals we believe to be flawed.
Financial support for destitute asylum seekers whose refusals we believe to be flawed
The organisation aims to bring the Newly Arrived, Asylum Seekers and Refugee LGBT members together to develop a welcoming safe place environment for its members here in the UK. Interested members are always welcome to join and participate regardless of age, sexual orientation, nationality or religion. PLGBTO aims to promote self-esteem, confidence and unity amongst its members by working alongside surrounding LGBT communities and organisations both locally and nationally. around
The Persian LGBT+ Organisation does not provide immigration advise but will signpost and support access to external agencies that can provide member support.
Ayslum and Immigration advice/representation/advocacy.
Asylum Tribunal representation.
Asylum Support Appeals.
Student placements, volunteering.
In 2005 files were awarded to David Forbes upon the liquidation of the “Midland Refugee Council” and in 2006 Lifeline Options was born as a micro enterprise, becoming a Community Interest Company in 2010. Initially supported by European and Council funding, Lifeline has survived over the last 10 years thanks to voluntary work and donations from churches and small charities. Until 2015 we were on the grants committee of Hope Projects. David Forbes was a founder member of RESTORE in 1999-2000 and served on the committee until 2008. We have had a number of Leonardo and Erasmus placements over the years as well as Social Work Students between 2010 and 2015.
Geographical area covered
West Midlands , plus individuals and families dispersed throughout the UK.
Housing, Social inclusion & Moving-on support for LGBTI Asylum Seekers & Refugees.
We support LGBTI asylum seekers and refugees through three main programmes:
1. Housing: we provide them with safe temporary housing. Once obtained refugee status we support them to find more permanent housing, to access other services (e.g.healthcare) and we advocate for them;
2. Social inclusion: we provide group and 1-2-1 activities (mindfulness, workshops in managing stress and anxiety, etc.) that help people to improve their life skills, reduce their isolation and build friendships;
3. Employability: we support people accessing Universal Credit in getting ready for work (CV, interview skills, job search) and we facilitate job opportunities.
Informal English language practice, community building, improving self-esteem, educating others about asylum / refugee issues
Stories of Hope and Home is a project focused around building a community and creating safe space in which Asylum Seekers and Refugees can explore and share their stories. It encourages and empowers them to discover their voice, allowing them to share their narrative in their own words, and helping to realise that their stories, individually and collectively have worth and value.
By taking these stories: expressed through storytelling, poetry, theatre and other media; to others, particularly in educational settings, the stories become powerful points of encounter with other sectors of the community, helping to educate, to change perceptions and to build positive relationships.
CodeYourFuture is a non-profit organisation offering tech vocational training to refugees and other disadvantaged groups. We believe that education and employment in the tech industry are the best way to offer a thriving life to underprivileged people. We do this through a 8-month part-time training program in areas like software development. We teach people to code, support their personal development then help them find meaningful work in tech. Over 70% of eligible graduates have found employment in companies like the Financial Times, BBC, Capgemini, PA Consulting and Ticketmaster.
Helps unaccompanied children who have been age disputed over 18. Where possible we work with local authorities to resolve a young person’s age. Where this is not possible we work with highly experienced solicitors and barristers to ensure the client receives quality legal advice and representation.
Strategic Migration Partnerships (SMPs) are local authority-led partnerships which provide structures and forums of engagement for effectively dealing with migration at a local, regional and national level. SMPs work to meet the needs of National and Local Governments, and local communities.
Accommodation provider & Housing support for the Syrian Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Programme; General homeless accommodation and support. Provider of Male Survivors of Modern Day Slavery Outreach Support Service (Birmingham)
Wellbeing & Inclusion Support – Asylum Seekers & Refugees
Restore aims to welcome, include and integrate refugees and asylum seekers through a range of relational work, including one-to-one befriending by a team of over 100 volunteers and group social activities for families, women and men.
Therapeutic Support – Asylum Seeker & Refugee Children
A part of Therapeutic Services at Refugee Council, the My View project offers shot-term one-to-one psychotherapy (up to 12 sessions) and small group therapy interventions to separated children & adolescents.
Geographical area covered
We accept referrals from outside the city, however we operate out of our Birmingham base
The Children’s Advice Project is part of the Children’s Section of the Refugee Council and it works across England with separated children who are seeking asylum. We offer expert advice and support, and work with a range of professionals including solicitors, social workers and foster carers.
Migrant Help exist to protect people affected by displacement and exploitation, helping them thrive as individuals and recover from their trauma. They look to support those most in need and least likely to find support elsewhere, whilst aiming to bridge community gaps and bring services and support together.
Migrant Help work in the areas of asylum & refugee support, human trafficking, slavery, refugee resettlement, Clear Voice interpreting and translation.
Project to support the voluntary sector in Birmingham and the Black Country by improving coordination, communication and collaboration to support the effective settlement of migrants and a positive integration agenda
Advice & Support – Asylum Seekers, Refugees, Migrants
We serve the whole community, particularly asylum seekers, refugees and newcomers, with kindness and respect, to affirm the rights and dignities of vulnerable people across Sandwell, West Birmingham and the Black Country.
We support language skills and personal development through IELTS, Life in the UK and basic IT.
We provide a work club, advice on asylum support and support opportunities regarding health care, welfare benefits, housing and immigration (including EU settlement). We also provide information and support on the asylum process/ food, clothing and baby pack distribution. We also have a weekly community café.
The communities we work with face a variety of complex barriers in accessing mental health well being support services and information by offering a range of flexible and creative support and information across Birmingham.
We provide free specialist legal advice to those most in need and use legal processes to fight social exclusion. We advocate for people, challenge unfair decisions, take cases to the highest courts and work in partnerships with other support services.
As well as helping people move from crisis to stability, we deliver services that help people anticipate problems by acting early and tackling the root cause.
Areas supported include:
Social Care and Health Welfare Benefits Housing Public Law Debt Employment Family Immigration and Asylum
Direct support to children (up to 18yrs) “separated from country and family” who have been trafficked and/or exploited. Support provided to assist young people to navigate complex systems including immigration, children’s services and criminal justice, as well as emotional and practical support.
Geographical area covered
Birmingham, Coventry, Solihull, Walsall, Wolverhampton, Dudley, Sandwell – children are the responsibility of these Local Aothorities whether they are placed within or out of these areas.
Advice & Support for Refugee,/Asylum Seeker & Migrant Women
Baobab gives confidential advice and assistance to women on immigration, health, financial and housing issues. We also provide information on other projects and services, colleges and support groups. We focus on undocumented and asylum seeking women, and help newly granted refugees and settled women access established community services. We prioritise women who have been affected by gender violence and trafficking.
Our trauma informed ethos is to engage women to learn about and navigate the system in a positive way, stand in their own power and draw on supportive people and networks. Practicing advocates have years experience and are working with newly qualified advocates, we are all developing casework skills. We work with community interpreters.
We provide advice and assistance to refugee and migrant women, through drop in and 1-1 support services. We also work with partners on research, training and awareness raising.
Asylum Matters works in partnership locally and nationally to improve the lives of refugees and people seeking asylum through social and political change. We do this by:
Bridging the gap between asylum policy and practice: We mobilise our regional networks to collect evidence about the impact of policies on people going through the asylum system. In this way we aim to ensure that national policy discussions are informed by the realities faced by refugees and people seeking asylum. Acting as a catalyst and convenor of campaigning action: We coordinate advocacy and campaigning work on a range of issues ahead of key influencing opportunities. We also provide a forum for our partners to exchange information, share best practice and plan joint action. Reinforcing links between local and national campaigning: We facilitate collaboration between local organisations and national agencies. Where possible, we align campaigning activities and ensure consistency in messaging so that decision-makers receive the same calls to action at local and national levels. Building voice and local campaigning capacity: We work with local partners to build their capacity and support their own campaigning and advocacy work. We look for platforms for refugees, people seeking asylum and their supporters to tell their stories and campaign for change. Advocating directly with decision-makers: We work with policy-makers to address the issues identified by our partners and ensure that these discussions are informed by local perspectives.
Please note: Team are working from home due to COVID-19. Please send all inquiries via email.
ASIRT is a not-for-profit OISC regulated advocacy organisation. We provide legal support and representation to asylum seekers and other undocumented migrants in the West Midlands. We can help with: Human rights applications (including help with fee waivers) Applications for recourse to public funds ‘Zambrano’ applications Fresh asylum claims Applications for local authority Children Act/Care Act assessments Training around migrants’ health and social care rights for local professionals We particularly help those that are not eligible for publicly funded legal representation, and who may lack the financial resources to be able to pay for private representation to help regularise their immigration status.
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