Author Archives: UiD
‘This was not a just a gesture but a practical demonstration of solidarity and love for those in need.’ Over 30 Cradoc School pupils came to school on Sunday 29th January to help Hay, Brecon and Talgarth Sanctuary for Refugees (HBTSR) to welcome 55 people seeking asylum or refuge in Swansea to Cradoc School for…
UID FC took part in the beach soccer on Sunday and put in a very good performance. Out of the seven games played we won 5, drew 1 and lost 1.
The results were;
An excellent run of results which saw UID scoring 15 goals whilst conceding only 4. The only defeat was by a single goal against quick young opposition in a very even game, which was not decided until the very late goal.
A very different day for the team as the loose sand surfaces were very demanding. This was best reflected by the comments regarding pitch size ending after the first match. The conditions taking their toll as players had to pull out injured. Those players who did make it to the end showed great character to keep going as the squad reduced in size to leave only one substitute available for the last game. It was most pleasant to be reminded that the team had said they would win the last three games after the one defeat after the final match. A final game with a very fitting and satisfying come from behind win against opponents who fought for every single ball.
Typically there was some concern whether we would have a team or not as the morning saw the continuation of the grey low clouds and drizzle which have replaced summer this year. It was important to get a team out there and to play with purpose. There were one or two absentees from the early player lists so we were lucky to have enough players in the end.
Thanks and congratulations go to the whole team! I hope that our players now rest and recover so we can put in some training sessions before our match in Talgarth in two weeks time. We have proved we can play and win against a variety of opponents today, so lets get ourselves prepared, then we can go to Talgarth and win too.
On Sunday 10th July, asylum seekers and refugees living in the Swansea area were made very welcome in and around the Llangors lake area in Powys on a wonderful respite trip facilitated by Hay, Brecon and Talgarth Sanctuary for refugees (HBTS4R) and their incredibly kind supporters.
This is the ninth respite trip provided by HBTS4R since last December. These trips are very popular indeed and a vital break for those on the fringes of society who are limited in what activities they can do whilst experiencing high levels of anxiety due to waiting prolonged periods of time for Home Office decisions. Reactions and feedback from such trips are always of immense gratitude for being made so welcome in such amazingly beautiful places and the great activities provided.
We offer many thanks to all those that made this such a fantastic day for everyone involved;
- Hay, Brecon and Talgarth Sanctuary for Refugees for devising such programs and their kind ongoing support.
- Ty Mawr Lime for hosting
- Kirsty Willimas Am, Cllr Mel Davies and Ex Mp Roger Williams for showing solidarity
- Brecon Food bank, Morrisons Brecon, Aldi Brecon and COOP Brecon for donations of food and countless individual donations of food and toiletries [mostly anonymous].
- Llangorse Multi Activity Centre for showing the beaver sanctuary
- Llyn Safaddan and Beacons Benefice [for toiletries and cakes]
- Llangorse Youth & Community Centre for hosting the day so ably coordinated by Melrose East.
- Llangorse church in Wales school for messages of welcome.
- The kind volunteers from Swansea bay Asylum Seeker Support Group and Unity in Diversity for coming along and helping out.
Maria (SBASSG) speaks for us all in her feedback on the day.
I am writing on behalf of all of us (asylum seekers, refugees and volunteers) who benefited from your hospitality at Ty Mawr and Llangorse yesterday. We all had a wonderful time. I think it is the people who see our friends on a weekly basis that really notice a difference in their demeanour on a day like this. I don’t think I had ever seen one particular man smile before, his wife and children, one of whom he has never seen, are in his home country. He smiled and laughed yesterday and said to me that he was “feeling ok today”. What a testament to what you are doing. Another man who had only been in Swansea for two weeks and can speak virtually no English, found a fellow ‘countryman’ who was keen to help him, having been in his position before. There was a lot of ‘signposting’ going on, which is invaluable. Your kindness is so appreciated, but it is difficult for our friends to express this. We hear snippets of conversation on the way home about the delicious food, the kind people, the beautiful countryside and the peace. They ALL want to come again, most want to live near Brecon now! There was obviously an enormous amount of work and effort put in to organising and catering for such an event, but all I can say is that it was worth it. Exhausted from fresh air and exercise, full of wholesome food and clutching bags of gifts – 50+ people went home very happy yesterday. Thank you one and all.
Maria & Co
Many thanks from the folks at UiD for the kind donations brought back from our trip 🙂
Click Here to see how you can easily make ‘free’ donations to UiD when shopping at your favourite on-line stores.
It has been an unsettling few weeks with the EU referendum and subsequent chaos and uncertainty as 51.9% of British voters chose to exit the European Union, whose motto interestingly is ‘United in Diversity’. Since then there has been a significant rise in racist outbursts and attacks on non-UK nationals.
It is for this reason we had a whole-group session last week to discuss the referendum and how to stay safe and find support. We were able to inform people of the commitment of local bodies that offer to help report/deal with race hate crimes in our area. Those that offer support include; EYST, Swansea University, University of Wales Trinity St David, Gower College Swansea and Swansea Bay Racial Equality Council. We concluded with information on the upcoming Airshow to make people aware of what’s happening and when. We were also able to inform people of some nice free public events being held in Swansea over the summer.
Thanks to the hard work of David, our very kind volunteer English teacher and treasurer we are now a fully registered charity. This empowers us to apply for funding and support for the work we love to do. We are so happy to be formalised as a charity after our difficult upheaval last March due to Cyrenians Cymru going into administration. It has been a steep learning curve for many of us and there has been much development as a result.
Shortly after receiving news of our charity status we were informed that our joint bid with Swansea Bay Asylum Seeker Support group (SBASSG) for a ‘New Beginnings Fund’ was successful. We greatly look forward to cooperating ‘officially’ with SBASSG who we work closely with in supporting asylum seekers and refugees in the Swansea area.
Finally, we are very happy indeed to receive an award for being an ‘Organisation of Sanctuary’ kindly presented by the wonderful team at Swansea City of Sanctuary at their ‘Meaningful Activities for Asylum Seekers and Refugees’ workshop. We are very proud to stand alongside such organisations as EYST, Swansea Council for Voluntary Service and the African community centre, empowered by our shared passion to support people.
Unity in Diversity is run entirely by volunteers and without their very kind help and determination we simply wouldn’t be able to do what we do. It is with a glad heart that we thank you all for your hard work and dedication, the feedback we get for the service we provide is always of the highest order and it’s all thanks to our amazing team.
Much appreciation to supporting organisations that continually help us in our work. Many thanks to;
- Rosie, Neil and everyone at the United Reformed Church for their kind guidance, help and our wonderful drop-in venue.
- Food for Life Wales for keeping everyone fed and happy with their wonderful food.
- SCVS (Swansea Council for Voluntary Service) for their vital support every step of the way on our journey to where we are now.
- Swansea City of Sanctuary for their support, recognition of our work, promotion of our group and all the information put our way regarding funding opportunities and available activities.
- Nina and the team at CATCH (Cwmtawe Action To Combat Hardship) for all the donations and for regularly popping in to see what people need.
- Ailsa, Sean and everyone at Hay, Brecon and Talgarth Sanctuary for Refugees for being such a wonderful partner organisation and for providing so much support, cash donations, fantastic ICT equipment, food, household items and the amazing respite trips and volunteering opportunities that so many of our friends enjoy.
- Hiraeth Hope for their amazing respite trips and volunteer opportunities.
- The English Language Training Services department of Swansea University for providing qualified volunteer English teachers for the last 6 years.
- Red Café Mumbles for their ongoing support and linked activities.
- Caer Las furniture scheme for providing volunteer opportunities and a sense of purpose for many of our members.
- And to all those who help us in our work who we’ve failed to mention.
Onward and Upward 🙂
Imagine you are new to Swansea, you would like to learn more about your new community but you are forbidden from taking employment. These are circumstances which people seeking sanctuary commonly face.
Join us on Tuesday July 5th from 13:30-16:30 at Swansea YMCA to gain a clearer understanding of what is meant by ‘meaningful activity’ with specific reference to people seeking sanctuary as well as an opportunity to promote your organisation’s services. There will be presentations from Displaced People in Action / Swansea City of Sanctuary, Swansea Council for Voluntary Service, Down to Earth Project and Hay Brecon & Talgarth Sanctuary for Refugees.
Following these presentations there will be an opportunity for organisations to network and promote their activities to people seeking sanctuary.
For those seeking sanctuary, hear presentations from some of the excellent activities and services which exist in Swansea and elsewhere in Wales and make use of the opportunity to find out how you can access these activities.
Tickets are free but need to be booked online.
Posted on behalf of Swansea University’s ELTS department
Dear Swansea Community Members
ELTS offers free English Language Classes to any non-native speaker of English in the local area at Pre-intermediate level or above via our Teacher Training programme. There does not need to be any connection to the University.
The basic details are below:
Free English Language Classes
Monday 4th July to Friday 29th July 2016
Monday to Friday 10:00 a.m. – 12:00
Classes at three levels: pre-intermediate, intermediate, and upper-intermediate.
We will hold drop-in registration sessions for new students as follows:
Thursday 30th June and Friday 1st July
Margam Building 3rd Floor 9-3pm
Students with additional queries should contact:
While we try to accommodate all who wish to attend, pre-registered students will have priority if numbers reach our class limits.
Please encourage any non-native speaker of English who you feel could benefit from classes to attend, and distribute this information to any suitable person inside or outside the university. The classes are a good mix of international students, and they will be made very welcome.
I regret that we are not able to reimburse travel expenses.
ELTS Swansea University
A wonderful day was had by all in the beautiful Elan Valley near Rhayader on Sunday. Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water very kindly offered to host an Away Day and at around 11am, a coach and two cars with around 60 people arrived. The group represented a plethora of nationalities (and language abilities!) and included families with children.
A fantastic time was had at the Garage Music Venue last night. Skabartawe Swansea kindly allowed us to be their featured charity at one of their very popular Ska/Punk nights. We were very happy to see so many keen supporters of UiD having a great time – and a good dance. A good amount of money was raised and as ever we are delighted at every opportunity to continue/extend our service. The raffle was very popular and everyone was hoping for the top prize – 2 nights stay (for 2) in “a quirky little hut in a secret landscape” near Hay on Wye. Many thanks to Hay, Brecon and Talgarth Sanctuary for Refugees for making this available through their kind and supportive members. A last minute prize of 2 night’s B&B in Madrid was kindly added by Ni – thank you so much.
Finally, a massive thank you to the UiD team of volunteers for such an energetic and positive approach. You worked hard and it was an amazing success – thanks so much for your passion and teamwork – as ever.