Marie-France, one of our Befrienders, was recently interviewed during a service at St. Mary the Virgin, Welwyn. Hear what she has to say about Yarl’s Wood…
We are pleased to tell you that from 30th March Caroline and Jess will be hosting a weekly Drop-In Session in YWIRC. These sessions will run every Thursday 10am–12pm in the office opposite Welfare for any female detainee. Tea, coffee & biscuits will be available to help provide a relaxed atmosphere for chat, playing games, general socialising. Over time we expect the sessions to evolve to address the needs and preferences of those who come along.
The aim of these sessions is not only to provide another opportunity to check in with those we support already but also to meet those who may be especially isolated or lonely to see if they are interested in having a Befriender. Please encourage those you visit to come along.
We have now finalised details for this year’s Annual Meeting:
7pm, Wednesday, 5th July
The Place Theatre, Bradgate Road, Bedford. MK40 3DE
This will be followed immediately (8pm) by a performance of
The Bundle, an asylum seeker’s story by the Journeymen Theatre. It is based on the real life story of a woman who flees the persecution and violence of her society and immediate family to save both herself and her three children. Here in the UK, she continues to negotiate the complex and harsh thickets of bureaucracy in order to attain refugee status.
There will be a cash bar and we will gratefully receive a donation for the performance.
Full details to follow.
During Refugee Week, there will be showing of The Scar Test. A time you will know but a place you cannot. With unique access through the Yarl’s Wood Befrienders, Untold Theatre brings you stories from the inside. The play takes its title from a procedure used to determine whether detainees have undergone torture in their home countries, but not all forms of torture leave scars…
- Provide a healthy distraction from daily worries
- Teach new skills and interests
- Improve the outdoor environment for all to enjoy
You can help get it off the ground by:
- Supporting the Crowdfunding campaign which goes live on 2nd March 2017 at 6:00pm
- Attending the Crowdfunding launch event on 3rd March 2017, 6:00–8:00pm at The Chapter House, St Peter’s Church, De Pary’s Avenue, Bedford, MK40 2TX. Jess is going to be singing, Nina (one of our trustees) will be speaking, and there will be a quiz, as well as cake!
- Book free tickets to the event at: https://thyme2growcrowdfundinglaunch.eventbrite.co.uk/
- Find out more about the Scheme and Crowdfunding campaign at: www.thyme2grow.org.uk
We are pleased to announce that we have recently received grants from the AB Charitable Trust and The Wixamtree Trust, plus an unexpected £500 donation from a corporate giving scheme. Thank you very much.
As you can appreciate, the women detained in Yarl’s Wood experience isolation significantly worse when everyone around them is speaking a language they barely, if at all, understand. Therefore, we are trying to recruit more people with language skills. We are particularly looking for people who can speak:
Albanian Amharic Arabic Farsi Hindi Lingala Mandarin Polish Russian Spanish Tigrinya Urdu Vietnamese
We want our 24th June training and selection day to be dedicated to people with language skills.
A meeting took place at the Corn Exchange in Bedford on the evening of 2nd February to canvass views from a mixed selection of the local population on the current immigration situation. It was led by Rt Hon Yvette Cooper MP and included several members of the Select Committee.
In attendance, there were about 70 people including a good number of YWBefrienders and members of BRASS.
The round table discussions focused on how Bedford has successfully managed community cohesion, as well as discussions on the asylum process. Yarl’s Wood Befrienders were vocal in their condemnation of the immigration process at the present time.
Are you coming into Bedford this weekend? Then why not come along and see our festive tree festooned with our excellent handmade ‘stars at Christmas’ themed baubles. It’s not only for fun as our leaflets are there to raise awareness of what we do.
The festival is at St Paul’s Church’s from 30th November to 4th December. Entrance costs £2.50 (free to children under the age of 16) and refreshments are available. The Festival is a partnership between Bedford Hospitals Charity and St Paul’s Church.