About2019-06-12T11:57:21+00:00

ABOUT

Empowering Refugees and Asylum Seekers to be active agents in change

ABOUT

Empowering Refugees and Asylum Seekers to be active agents in change

Our Organisation

Our organisation began in 2001 as a project within the North of England Refugee Service (NERS), emerging from a Transnational Project led by NERS and funded by the European Union titled ‘A Trans-national Network: Hearing the voices of Refugees in Policy and Practice in the European Union’. A central finding of this research identified

‘the necessity of recognising complementarity in the roles and responsibilities of all stakeholders to the two-way process of integration. It is clearly evident that refugees themselves are a valuable resource with a vital and integral role to play in supporting the integration process. However, refugees can only perform this role if there is a commitment to developing effective mechanisms and structures for hearing and enacting their voiced experience. This would ensure that policy development is evidence based. The implementation of such an inclusive policy development model would ensure that refugees are practically enabled and empowered to be active agents in the process of their own integration rather than merely the target or object of it. Refugees must be enabled to be active agents in the process of integration policy development and its practical implementation in order for it to be effective’

Model of Collective Action

We developed our Model of Collective Action to deliver this understanding. Our Constitution was signed in March 2013 by 17 founding member organisations, arising from the self-organising that tool place within the community of asylum seekers and refugees newly created by the Dispersal Policy implemented from 2000. NERS supported us to full independence in 2004 when we became a Registered Charity. In 2012 we were awarded Community Organisation of the year at the Tees Valley BME Achievement Awards, and in 2013 we won Outstanding Small Organisation at the North East Voluntary and Community Sector Awards.

Members

Our members are community groups set up and run by asylum seekers and refugees. They are known as RCO’s (refugee-led community organisations). They organise a variety of support activities, and range in scale from small, unfunded informal groupings to constituted, funded structures. Their communities share some experience or identity, for example, where they live in the region, a particular challenge, their gender, nationality or language. Our membership unites to decide our priorities and create their collective voice.

Trustees

Our Board of Trustees is made up of 7 members elected from the membership by the membership, each serving for 3 years. They may co-opt 2 further members, who serve for one year. Trustees are elected to serve the interests of the whole membership and do not represent their RCO at meetings of the Board.

Staff

Our staff work across the region, out of two office bases in Gateshead and in Middlesbrough. We currently employ 2 full time staff. They support our members to deliver our programme of influencing work and organise a range of activities aimed at upskilling members to support their communities effectively.

Funders

Our funders are primarily charitable foundations that support the inclusion of disadvantaged or marginalised voices, and the objectives of equality, social and economic inclusion and social justice. Currently, our work is supported by:

  • Millfield House Foundation
  • Comic Relief
  • National Lottery Community Fund
  • Community Foundation
  • North East Migration Partnership

Funders

Our Organisation

Our organisation began in 2001 as a project within the North of England Refugee Service (NERS), emerging from a Transnational Project led by NERS and funded by the European Union titled ‘A Trans-national Network: Hearing the voices of Refugees in Policy and Practice in the European Union’. A central finding of this research identified

‘the necessity of recognising complementarity in the roles and responsibilities of all stakeholders to the two-way process of integration. It is clearly evident that refugees themselves are a valuable resource with a vital and integral role to play in supporting the integration process. However, refugees can only perform this role if there is a commitment to developing effective mechanisms and structures for hearing and enacting their voiced experience. This would ensure that policy development is evidence based. The implementation of such an inclusive policy development model would ensure that refugees are practically enabled and empowered to be active agents in the process of their own integration rather than merely the target or object of it. Refugees must be enabled to be active agents in the process of integration policy development and its practical implementation in order for it to be effective’

Model of Collective Action

We developed our Model of Collective Action to deliver this understanding. Our Constitution was signed in March 2013 by 17 founding member organisations, arising from the self-organising that tool place within the community of asylum seekers and refugees newly created by the Dispersal Policy implemented from 2000. NERS supported us to full independence in 2004 when we became a Registered Charity. In 2012 we were awarded Community Organisation of the year at the Tees Valley BME Achievement Awards, and in 2013 we won Outstanding Small Organisation at the North East Voluntary and Community Sector Awards.

Members

Our members are community groups set up and run by asylum seekers and refugees. They are known as RCO’s (refugee-led community organisations). They organise a variety of support activities, and range in scale from small, unfunded informal groupings to constituted, funded structures. Their communities share some experience or identity, for example, where they live in the region, a particular challenge, their gender, nationality or language. Our membership unites to decide our priorities and create their collective voice.

Trustees

Our Board of Trustees is made up of 7 members elected from the membership by the membership, each serving for 3 years. They may co-opt 2 further members, who serve for one year. Trustees are elected to serve the interests of the whole membership and do not represent their RCO at meetings of the Board.

Staff

Our staff work across the region, out of two office bases in Gateshead and in Middlesbrough. We currently employ 2 full time staff. They support our members to deliver our programme of influencing work and organise a range of activities aimed at upskilling members to support their communities effectively.

Funders

Our funders are primarily charitable foundations that support the inclusion of disadvantaged or marginalised voices, and the objectives of equality, social and economic inclusion and social justice. Currently, our work is supported by:

  • Millfield House Foundation
  • Comic Relief
  • National Lottery Community Fund
  • Community Foundation
  • North East Migration Partnership

CONTACTS

If you have an idea to improve lives in your community, and want to join action for change, then get in touch with us today.

CONTACTS

CONTACTS

If you have an idea to improve lives in your community, and want to join action for change, then get in touch with us today.

CONTACTS