In Memory of Dot

In Memory of Dot

Dorothy, recently diagnosed with terminal cancer contacted MRSN to say she'd like to leave her household items and furniture to MRSN housing appeal for refugees setting up homes. Sadly the late Dot passed away, may she Rest In Peace. With her list in hand our housing support worker set about sorting through the items Dot had left in her home for us to take anything that could support one of our refugees in rebuilding their lives. One of the recipients who just got a council flat came along too and was practically able to furnish her whole flat. We noticed Dorothy had a collection of wooden ornamental boxes of all shapes, colours and sizes. The recipient said back home she too collected ornamental boxes of all kinds and immediately fell in love with all of Dots boxes which seems had been left especially for her. What she lost back home, she found in this gift from Dot.We managed to share out other...
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Connecting enthusiastic volunteers with new opportunities

Connecting enthusiastic volunteers with new opportunities

The Shared Routes project have continued to do amazing work throughout the last year training people from migrant backgrounds to be able to work and volunteer within the UK.In March, the Shared Routes Project had to suddenly adapt all their face to face training and support groups to online platforms. The staff did an incredible job transferring all their training online, as did the peer navigators who were so keen to get stuck in again.Peer navigators who go through this training love the support they get as they are keen to build their skills so that they can find jobs and volunteering opportunities that they love here in the UK. Partnering with Emerge EMERGE provides the full range of waste, recycling and confidential shredding services to businesses and schools, and promotes sustainable resource management by offering advice, information and educational services within the wider community. EMERGE works with the National Community Wood Recycling Project (NCWRP) collecting redundant wood from construction sites and...
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Renovating the next home for our housing project

Renovating the next home for our housing project

Since we launched this appeal we have worked hard to provide a new home to four more tenants to keep them from falling into homelessness and destitution. Thanks to your generous donations, we have managed to repaint one of our houses and provide essential items to make it homely for its new occupants. On Thursday 17th December our dedicated caseworker and Resource Development Worker gathered masked up in the house to deliver some ordered items.One of our new tenants, P* and  our caseworker, Andrea gave us a tour of the house and the work P has been doing on it. As the walls were not in the best condition, P worked hard to repaint all the house and has been working hard to make his bedroom a space of his own after being in temporary accommodation for months.We chatted with P to hear more about how this housing project has helped him.When did you first get in contact with MRSN?Around...
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Making a house a home

Making a house a home

In October, we released the following story in our newsletter. For years we have been working with landlords and housing associations to ensure that refugees have a safe place to call home so they can recover from the trauma they have faced and rebuild their lives. Since releasing this story, we decided that we needed to do more to provide homes for refugees. That's why we have launched our housing appeal so refugees are not left to sleep and survive on the streets of Greater Manchester. 1 in 2 refugees are forced to sleep rough or are in a homeless shelter after being told to leave their home office accommodation. They are given just 28 days’ notice leave to go and fend for themselves once they are granted refugee status. Since Covid-19, this includes learning to navigate their way through very complex bureaucratic systems and processes that are increasingly becoming more online. This causes further exclusion for refugees and asylum seekers...
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Exam revision with the Check in and chat buddies

Exam revision with the Check in and chat buddies

When the coronavirus pandemic hit the UK back in March 2020, it meant that all of the amazing work that was being done at MRSN came to a halt. Whilst everyone at MRSN worked hard to keep the crucial services going from home, it became apparent that the effects of the pandemic were calling for a new service altogether. Out of the need to combat the social isolation and destitution within refugee communities, exacerbated by the pandemic, was born the ‘Check in and Chat Scheme’. Upon initiation of the scheme I was matched up with my buddy and have been in constant contact since April 2020. I was given a brief summary of my buddy’s personal interests and reasons for using the scheme; from this summary I could tell my buddy was interested in maintaining their English speaking skills during the nationwide lockdown. Our first conversations were spent getting to know each other and making arrangements for how our regular contact...
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October 2020 Quarterly Newsletter

October 2020 Quarterly Newsletter

To our funders and supporters, On behalf of all staff and recipients, we would like to take this chance to thank our funders and supporters for your financial support during this pandemic. Without this, we would not have been able to provide our high level of support to our community during the emergency response, the bouncing back and adapting periods of lockdown. In the last few months, MRSN has undergone a number of changes to adapt to the immediate needs of our beneficiaries, as well as prepare for the future. This quarterly newsletter looks at some of the changes we have gone through as an organisation in order to keep developing to respond to the changing situation, as well as maintain consistent high quality support for our beneficiaries. You will also find some of the many recent stories from individuals we have been working with in our projects. Please enjoy the first of our quarterly newsletters by clicking here. We wish you and your...
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How a donation of shoes changed a life

How a donation of shoes changed a life

One of the asylum seekers we work with in the destitution project had been struggling with a foot injury for a while. The injury to one of his feet had meant that his foot had swollen to twice its size.The gentleman didn't have the money in order to get shoes that fit properly so had been relying on a pair of sandals that were too small for his feet. This lead to more injury to his injured foot, which meant he had to get antibiotic treatment.A lovely student we are connected to, heard of this man's desperate situation. He donated the money to get proper fitting shoes, so the gentleman could get around easier and his foot could recover.With this money, our Destitute Project Coordinator, Jennifer was able to take him to get his feet measured properly, and buy some shoes that would fit properly.He has asked only for the photo to feature his feet in the brand new shoes,...
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A family safely reunited at last

A family safely reunited at last

As a part of the Check in and Chat buddy scheme, our volunteers speak to their buddies over the phone to offer support, whether it be through teaching them English or just having someone to talk to.Recently, one of our volunteers was talking to their buddy who was updating him on his current situation. This volunteer was told that his buddy had been separated from his sons who were at risk of being sent to Spain. This story was shared by The Guardian and you can read more below:https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/aug/30/sons-must-leave-uk-after-boat-crossing-but-father-stays-after-flight-arrivalOur volunteer saw the seriousness of this issue, so decided to guide his buddy by explaining to him how he can appeal to the court and found him connections to lawyers through a staff member at MRSN. Now, the three sons have been told that they can stay in the UK and are in the process of being able to move back to be with their father.At the end of September, one...
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Supporting people with diabetes

Supporting people with diabetes

Our food parcels at the destitute project don't just support people in extreme financial destitution. They also mean people can live a healthier lifestyle.We have a young man in his early 20’s who has been attending the RIS drop in’s and was seen by one of our RIS case workers, Sophie. Sophie realised there was a need for the destitution project to step in and referred the young man on to Jennifer, the Destitute Project Coordinator. This man was in desperate need of support not only with housing as he is in a hostel at present but he is also diabetic. Due to his Nass Support being only £37 per week he is finding it difficult to eat healthily as the money is not enough to provide nutritional foods which contains low carbs and reduced amounts of sugar.This financial support cannot meet the price demand for food types for a diabetic so he is forced to purchase cheaper brands and foods...
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Our dedicated team continuing to support refugees and asylum seekers through online skills training

Our dedicated team continuing to support refugees and asylum seekers through online skills training

Our Shared Routes project train people from migrant backgrounds including refugees and asylum seekers in skills they need for volunteering. They then work hard to connect them to volunteering opportunities. COVID-19 hit our Shared Routes Project team hard, as they were no longer able to meet face to face with volunteers. However, they have adapted amazingly, and continue to run this much needed training.This project engages people offering them much needed chances to gain valuable experiences and to connect locally. Equally as important, it helps to diversify the workforce of local organisations so that knowledge and perspectives of refugees and asylum seekers are included in their services.Here are some voices of people who participated in our training.“You guys were very friendly and the training was very informative. The workshops were very fruitful for me. And at this situation with Coronavirus, you know, we are sitting in the house hopeless because of limitation but you guys gave us the inspiration to do...
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