Bybrook Refugee Crisis Support Network Update 7

Dear all,

Please find attached an update on the situation regarding refugee families, particularly those settling in our area. There is also some information if you are interested in looking after unaccompanied children – lighter touch checks for prospective foster carers of refugees are planned.

Housing is becoming a big issue which is also explained along with information on how you can make a financial donation to support Syrian refugee families in Wiltshire.

I would be very grateful if you could forward this information to any individuals or groups that you are part of. The more people who know of the current needs, the better so that we can find the help which is needed.

Many thanks for your continued support of these families who have suffered so much but who are striving to make the very best of the new opportunities they have been offered.

Apologies if you receive this email more than once!

Best wishes

Julia Howey

Cancellation of Grittleton 4 o’clock service

Grittleton PCC have decided to cancel any future 4 o’clock services, which are usually held on the 3rd Sunday of each month, this means the services planned for 17th July and 21st August will not take place.

Instead they will probably move to having occasional services (Christingle, Mothering Sunday etc.) at which they can attract a wide congregation including children. More information will be released as the revised services are planned.

Bybrook Refugee Crisis Support Network Update 6 – Volunteer Induction Meeting


Hello everyone,

I now have a firm date for the volunteer induction meeting which is Wednesday 25th May. However, I don’t yet know the time or venue. It could be in Chippenham or in Trowbridge.

This meeting is for volunteers who wish to work directly with the refugee families. These volunteers need to be able to commit to regular, sustained and, especially in the early months, frequent support.

The most pressing need is for people who can help with the teaching of English – fluency is essential if they are to obtain jobs at the level and in the field they wish. My understanding is that all families have one language session per week provided by Wilts College. On top of this, qualified volunteers are needed who can teach (using support materials), people who can tutor, and people who can go into homes to talk with them to immerse them in the language.

The other need is for befrienders who can, sometimes at the drop of a hat, help them with tasks and sorting out problems such as filling in forms, taking them to the doctors, Citizens Advice Bureau etc etc!

If you feel that you would be interested in any of the above roles, please could you email me asap, stating whether or not you can attend the meeting and how you would like to help. I believe that the venue chosen depends on the number of people who are going to attend. I will pass any relevant information on to those who cannot attend and give your names to the relevant people at the meeting.

I will forward the time and venue as soon as I know them.

Best wishes to you all.


Bybrook Refugee Crisis Support Network Coordinator

Bybrook Refugee Crisis Support Network Update 5a

Hello everyone.

I am sorry but there has been some misunderstanding about the date for the induction meeting for volunteers. Graham was asked to publicise it for the 10th, but that was actually an induction meeting for area coordinators, which he didn’t realise.

The date for the volunteer induction meeting is still planned for a time in the week beginning 23rd May.

Julia Howey

Bybrook Refugee Crisis Support Network Coordinator

Bybrook Refugee Crisis Support Network Update 5

Hello everyone,

I spoke yesterday to Graham Martin who is the current coordinator for the Chippenham refugees (although he is about to step down).

He has emailed the refugee case worker, Fadi Albshara, to ask about donations of items and he is waiting for guidance from Wiltshire LA about the donation of money. The latter can be quite tricky as they don’t want it to affect benefits, but there are particular needs e.g. the provision of driving lessons which would make finding a job easier. He mentioned establishing a charitable fund and/or working through Wiltshire Community Foundation. I will let you know as soon as I hear anything further.

The Induction Meeting for those who are willing to work directly with the refugees will take place on Tuesday 10th May at 10.00 at County Hall. Trowbridge. I will attend and send out notes to those of you who cannot. I will also try to arrange for someone to come out to our area to help us with DBS checks which need to be done online with proof of identification.

Best wishes,

Julia Howey

Bybrook Refugee Crisis Support Network Coordinator