Malvern Welcomes

There are now five families in Malvern: two young men having arrived in March.

Two of these families have been welcomed by Malvern Welcomes under the Home Office Community Sponsorship scheme.  We are responsible for all aspects of their resettlement including having had to raise about £15,000 per family. We collect them from the airport, provide housing, organize health care, arrange schooling, provide English lessons and liaise with the Job Centre.  The other three families are the responsibility of Worcestershire County Council under a separate scheme.  However, we are greatly involved in supporting them too, giving vital practical support with hospital visits and childcare and befriending. We are also helping these families with their English learning and supporting some of the children in school.

Each of the families faces a variety of challenges, such as health issues and adapting to life in the UK.  Despite the smiles we see, we know that it is not always easy for them and we support them as much as we can.

We have held a number of social events where the families can get together, including a picnic on West Malvern playing fields. It was lovely to see the families relaxing together and the children enjoying games and sunshine.

The money which you have so generously raised is being used to support all of this work. Currently, we are encouraging the adults and children to feel part of the community by becoming involved in swimming and sport activities.  We are providing those who wish to swim with cards for The Splash for the summer.

We are also providing cards for the gym for the two young men who recently arrived, one of whom is severely disabled.  Both of these young men are very keen on weight training and love sport.

We hope that everyone will wish to continue with these activities after the summer but although the Splash is being very supportive we will need to find further funding for this.

Malvern Welcomes is, thanks to a grant from the Home Office, running a community arts project for young people entitled ‘Coming Together’.  The idea is to be as inclusive as possible. Taking the theme of ‘Rebirth’, youngsters will engage in drama, mime, art and craft activities over four Saturday mornings. Then there will be a big community event on Saturday, September 21st.

We budget carefully and spend wisely but as you would expect, there are frequently expenses which we could not have predicted, such as urgent interpreting sessions. We are grateful to Lansdowne Community for all the support you give us - not just financial but for allowing us to use the premises for our training days and other events. We always feel that you are there supporting us.       

Vivienne Jones