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Working with migrants and refugees can be challenging as often one just can’t accept the horror of what people survived in their countries of origin and how badly they are treated by our government and the media, constantly stereotyped and perceived as a threat. But there is also more positive side to what we do – people’s stories of survival and struggle for justice are inspirational and humbling, but the stories of our volunteers are real gems. Every year we have a fortune to meet and work with more than 100 volunteers from all walks of life, all ages, genders and creeds. This super diverse bunch of great human beings makes our work not only possible, but also meaningful. There are many ways for volunteers to get involved. A few weeks ago one of our volunteers, went along with a single mum of three to a meeting with a Housing Department in one of the Inner London Boroughs. She was granted full refugee status and as a result she has to leave accommodation provided by the Home Office and she and her three kids are now homeless. Our volunteer phoned our office in shock as the Caseworker who was supposed to help the homeless family declared in front him and the children that the mother can go and sleep at the bus stop and children will taken into care. Luckily, we had a pro-bono lawyer (another volunteer) in the office that day, who was able to advise him what to do and say. What the Caseworker said was not only cruel but also not true, but how is a homeless refugee single mum supposed to know that? If our volunteer was not there that day with this family until 8 pm they would have ended up homeless. Although he was in a complete shock at the most appalling way these local authority officials behaved, our volunteer remained calm and polite and managed to help the family avoid homelessness. He kept telling us of his shock as he witnessed the most brutal lack of empathy and prejudice by the staff who are supposed to be there as a safety net for all of us. This is not the first time, and sadly not the last time that safety net failed people in need, but thankfully, the great people of Britain have volunteered to step in, and provide safety net when all else fails. The refugee welcome in action.

Last year 107 volunteers contributed to our work in a number of different ways. If you have time and skills and feel passionately about justice and dignity for all migrants and refugees please come and volunteer at Migrants Organise. Call us or email info@migrantsorganise.org

Migrants for London [video]

Migrants for London [video]

Oct 07 2010

Migrants’ Rights Network (MRN), with the support of MRCF, recently produced and launched- ‘Migrants for London’. This video explores the conflicting reality…

MRCF Celebrates A Successful Year at AGM

MRCF Celebrates A Successful Year at AGM

Oct 07 2010

On September 23, MRCF celebrated our accomplishments over the last year. Zrinka Bralo, MRCF Executive Director, gave a presentation about our programmes’…

Why is digital activism important for migrants and refugees?

Why is digital activism important for migrants and refugees?

Oct 04 2010

As MRCF prepares for its second course on Digital Activism, I have been contemplating why and how digital activism is crucial for…

A Room without Walls

A Room without Walls

Sep 29 2010

The words below are a true account by one of the Active for Rights group members. The narrative was developed collectively through…

A day in the life of our Advice Worker

A day in the life of our Advice Worker

Jul 28 2010

This morning started with a pleasant surprise. In May 2009 I wrote to the Home Office on behalf of one of my…

Will ‘big society’ be big enough for all of us?

Will ‘big society’ be big enough for all of us?

Jul 23 2010

Yesterday I was working with the Co-ordinator of one of MRCF’s member organisations on a funding application. At the end of the…

MRCF Launches Report on Earned Citizenship and Volunteering

MRCF Launches Report on Earned Citizenship and Volunteering

Jul 14 2010

Migrants  and refugees hardly ever get to have a say on any policy that directly affects them. And so was the case…

Should Citizenship Be Earned Through Compulsory Volunteering?

Should Citizenship Be Earned Through Compulsory Volunteering?

Jul 07 2010

The Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009 introduced a longer and more difficult process for becoming a British Citizen, including a type…

MRCF launches new website to mark Refugee Week!

MRCF launches new website to mark Refugee Week!

Jun 14 2010

Welcome to the brand new MRCF website! It has been a long journey for us and I hope you will agree that…

Entitlement to Healthcare Consultation – Again!

Entitlement to Healthcare Consultation – Again!

Jun 11 2010

On the ‘wall of shame’ in my office is an e-mail I received  from the Department of Health (DoH) on 18th November…