Latest Blog Posts

Trafficked and living in limbo in the UK- Story of A Disabled Asylum Seeking Woman

By Ina My name is Ina, originally from Albania, and now seeking asylum in the UK. I am a young woman in my twenties and hold a higher degree in political science and have many language qualifications. I never thought my future would end up like this, but now I know that we cannot always… Read more »


Finding sanctuary in a book: a library project for refugees

By Simon Cloudesley, a Library Assistant at the Bodleian Library in Oxford What is the worth of a book? If you have been forced to leave your home in search of a safer and better life and now find yourself living indefinitely in a refugee camp, with few opportunities for mental stimulation or escape from… Read more »


How does an asylum seeker and refugee drop-in centre support families with early years children?

Frances Brabazon has just completed her degree in Early Childhood Studies and is about to embark on  a Masters degree in Social Work.  Here she shares her research findings at the Doncaster Conversation Club drop-in.  I have volunteered at the Doncaster Conversation Club (DCC) for a number of years when I have been on holiday… Read more »


“Bare Life”

Volunteer English teacher at the Doncaster Conversation Club, and editor of their newsletter, Paul Fitzpatrick, shares some profound thoughts about the values we place on the lives of asylum seekers. Writers about asylum sometimes make use of the ideas of the Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben.  He identified two different meanings of the simple word ‘life’. … Read more »


Paris – The City of Love?

Catherine Ford is a recently qualified teacher and single mum of 2. She spent a lot of  her earlier years living on protest camps, and is now supporting displaced people. Here she blogs about her recent volunteering trip to Paris.  Paris – the city of love? As I stepped off the plane in Paris, I was immediately struck… Read more »


Volunteers Week 2017 – A message of thanks to our volunteers

June 1st -7th is Volunteers Week and we recognise that City of Sanctuary groups rely on volunteers who do so much to foster and develop a culture of welcome and hospitality for those seeking sanctuary. Most City of Sanctuary groups are co-ordinated by volunteers, who give up their time freely to support the vision of City of… Read more »


Child Refugees Welcome? How schools can help.

Child refugees flee war and conflict and their journey to safety can be a long and traumatic. What can we do to ensure they feel safe, welcome and included in our schools asks Nola Ellen.     Who are refugees? Where are they from? Where do they go? What kinds of experiences do refugee children have? What’s… Read more »

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Media applauded for fair coverage of hatred attack on teen asylum seeker

By Forward Maisokwadzo, Media & Communications officer, City of Sanctuary The British media need to be applauded for their fair and accurate coverage of last week’s appalling hate crime attack on a young asylum seeker in Croydon. The Prime Minister Theresa described the attack as “despicable, abominable, and completely unacceptable” while local MP Gavin Barwell… Read more »


City of Sanctuary urges its supporters to do more to welcome refugees amid govt’s ‘reprehensible’ decision on Dubs

We, in the City of Sanctuary network express our deep concern shared by many about the Government’s attitude to the refugee crisis and their lack of commitment to accommodating unaccompanied refugee children through the Dubs Amendment. We urge our supporters to be vigilant and continue building a vibrant network essential to provide welcome and safety… Read more »

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A Day in the Life of Volunteers at Loughborough Town of Sanctuary

The arrival of an  unaccompanied minor and a distressed man setting himself alight – all in a day outside the East Midlands Reporting Centre in Loughborough. An ordinary day entails working with a colleague, meeting and greeting visitors to the Home Office Border Agency Reporting Centre in Loughborough. The visitors are either asylum seekers or visitors to the… Read more »


About this blog

Welcome to the City of Sanctuary blog!

A peaceful and prosperous world is one in which people can feel safe and secure in their homes, with their families and in their communities.  It is a world in which they can feel confident in their country, their culture and in the family of nations and peoples on our common planet.

But when war or civil unrest ravages a community, masses of people are forcibly displaced or simply flee to protect life.  At worst, they are left with only two options: death by privation, assault or genocide, or life in exile.  One need only think of those forced to flee the violence in Syria or the thousands dying in the Mediterranean to glimpse the severity of their need. Unfortunately, conflict continues to take its toll on such persons.

This blog provide a platform to share stories in the field of human rights, refugees and migration.

Invited writers contribute to this blog. The blog is administered by our Media & Communications Officer, Forward Maisokwadzo. We welcome your contributions and if interested to submit your piece, contact Forward Maisokwadzo: [email protected]

Views expressed by contributors to the blog do not necessarily represent City of Sanctuary's views and the responsibility rests with the contributor.

We look forward to your comments!