COVID-19 – Resources to learn English online

COVID-19 cancellations of face to face teaching in some institutions, will be a change for all, but a significant loss for many AS/R students. Studying can help refugee students feel positive about the future. For Asylum Seekers particularly, classes provide a social space to share and learn with others as well as a constructive activity (as legally they are not permitted to work). The Universities of Sanctuary mailing list have shared some resources for remote learning for those whose English classes have been cancelled due to COVID-19.

These courses are free to access via COURSERA and are not just for refugees or asylum seekers. They can be run from some phones as well as other devices (e.g. library computers). Not all are running right now, but anyone can sign up to join when available.

S, an asylum seeker applying for a place next year, says:

‘It is such a great idea to make the most of these days.’

Image via Unsplash
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Small steps to making your classroom a friendlier place

With thanks to @klovesbooks1 and @4bilingualism for highlighting these suggestions.

The human behind the refugee category (Discover Society)

Marcia Vera Espinoza writes for Discover Society,

We question refugees’ motivations, scrutinize their stories, generalize their persecution, feel sorry for their plight, and invisiblize their individuality among the numbers that frame their displacement. The category that gives refugees international protection is the same that singles them out as a member of what seems to be a homogeneous group: refugees. By using this category in this way we generalize about their lives, we claim to understand their needs and we aim to find ‘solutions’ for them.

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Challenging Immigration Detention

What can be done? Friday 15th November 2019

Taking place at 1pm in CE.225 (second floor, Creative Edge)

The session, led by grass roots organisations working with and for people who have experienced immigration detention in the UK, will include presentations from:
a) Dr Vicky Canning from the University of Bristol;
b) Samuel Farmery and other members of Migrant Artists Mutual Aid;
c) Lauren Cape-Davenhill from Right to Remain / These Walls Must Fall.

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Sharing Sustainability event 7th November

Action for Refugees was delighted to attend the Sustainability event supported by the Institute for Social Responsibility on Wednesday in Church House, Ormskirk. We joined with friends from the SDG network to share our work.

Over 20 groups were represented including the local food bank and the Liverpool World Centre, as well as academics from Edge Hill working on research linked to sustainability. It was great to meet groups working on these important issues and develop our local networks.

Bluecoat Event: Hostile Environment – Maya Goodfellow in conversation

“The UK government proudly calls the aim of its immigration policy to be the creation of a “hostile environment, ” while refugees drown in the Mediterranean and Britain votes to leave the EU against claims that “swarms” of migrants are entering Britain. Meanwhile, study after study confirms that immigration is not damaging the UK’s economy, nor putting a strain on public services, but immigration is blamed for all of Britain’s ills. Yet concerns about immigration are deemed “legitimate” across the political spectrum, with few exceptions. How did we get here?

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Why not volunteer?

Volunteer ESOL 1-1: Help with English is just one way to get involved

Do you have skills in ESOL or would you like to develop your understanding of ‘the refugee crisis’ beyond the tabloid headlines?

‘Skem International’ a group of refugees and community members from Skelmersdale, run two weekly events which are looking for more volunteers.

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