Refugee Week 2022: 20-26 June
Healing – Nima Javan illustration for Refugee Week 2022
The children we support are separated from their parents because of war or persecution. Forced to flee, they travel for weeks or months on end to reach safety, often going hungry and without a warm, safe place to sleep. Separated children are vulnerable and often traumatised by their experiences but they show incredible bravery, and the determination to make the best of their new lives.
These children deserve support and understanding at every stage of their recovery.
Comfort and dignity
We believe that healing can and should begin the moment separated children reach the UK.
Since Refugee Week 2021 our volunteers have created 2,600 arrival and emergency packs for lone child refugees. The packs provide toiletries and clean clothing to give separated children comfort and dignity after their long journeys.
These packs have allowed the young people to put new clothes on, get their dignity back and feel warm and comfortable for the first time in months.
Learning how to sleep again is a huge step for separated children as they settle into their new homes and schools. Following research into the effects of poor sleep on lone child refugees, we’ve seen a huge increase in demand for our sleep packs and have distributed over 1,700 around the UK during the past 12 months.
I just saw a young person and this was his feedback from last night:
“I had the best sleep ever, I fell asleep in five minutes last night. I still remember the smell of the lavender bag. I feel so fresh!”
He has been struggling with sleep for a long time.
Separated children are, above all, still children. Many of them have had their childhoods destroyed by trauma and loss but with the right support, all separated children can learn, have fun and experience joy. Our Club Class sessions over the last year have focused on giving young refugees the tools to navigate their new lives safely, to build relationships and to express their feelings.
Club Class sessions helped (a child from Afghanistan) meet a number of young Afghan people and build relationships; even after Club Class he was able to chat with the participants through telephone calls. He concluded that Club Class helped him not to be lonely as well as learning a lot about the UK through the sessions.