Care4Calais is a volunteer run charity operating in the UK, delivering essential aid to asylum seekers whilst they are waiting for their asylum claims to be processed. Asylum seekers are often housed in hotels for significant periods of time where they receive little support.
Currently we are supporting in four hotels in Redbridge, housing approximately 500 men, women and children. They are often struggling with trauma, isolation and loneliness.
They receive only £8 a week per person, and often only have the clothes they arrived to the hotels in. We therefore collect donations from the public and distribute them to hotels, as well as providing a friendly face and someone to talk to.
As well as the hotels, some individuals and families get dispersed into accommodation throughout Redbridge. Whilst this provides them the benefit of more space as well as their own cooking facilities, they are often even more isolated and go unnoticed by local organisations. They do not know the area well or know how to access things for themselves, so our volunteers will often signpost them to things in the community that can support them.
Main tasks and responsibilities
• Going to hotel sites and assisting the lead volunteers to distribute items of clothing, toiletries, and other essential items such as strollers or bikes.
• Supporting asylum seekers with specific requests both in hotels and in dispersal accommodation, such as registering children with schools, showing them where to go to the GP, or how to get to their local supermarket.
• Contributing towards finding and collecting donations for refugees, such as posting on local Facebook groups to reach out for support.
• Log all support given in a simple google sheet so that this can be tracked by the charities core team.
Benefits to Volunteer
There are many benefits to volunteering for Care4Calais:
Skills, attributes, qualifications and experience
• Volunteers will need to be able to work independently but also part of a team confidently
• Passionate about the refugee cause
• Have a mobile phone
This role is flexible and can be fit around your schedule