For over 24 years, Manchester Refugee Support Network (MRSN) have provided services to provide asylum seekers and refugees with the tools they need to resettle and flourish here in the UK. They're directly managed by refugee communities in Manchester and provide practical support to anyone fleeing conflict, persecution, and forms of abuse and injustice.
MRSN are members of Advice UK and have Regulated Immigration Adviser status with the Office of the Immigraton Services Commissioner. Additionally, the charity has also recently been awarded the Advice Quality Standard (AQS), and over the years have been consecutive winners of the Spirit of Manchester Award.
Established in 1995 by three refugee community organisations, their aim was to bring positive and lasting changes for refugees and people seeking sanctuary in the UK. With many refugees and asylum seekers often vulnerable in their new environment and experiencing isolation, MRSN quickly realised that their growth within society would be made easier with the support from a community, so they worked to build independent Refugee Community Organisations (RCOs) to help build sustainable growth within communities.
Manchester Refugee Support Network Charity Aims & Services
MRSN build their services with three key aims in mind:
- To support refugees in helping them access services and equal opportunities, preventing poverty and ultimately allowing individuals to reach their full potential.
- To educate asylum seekers and refugees on what their rights and responsibilities are, as well as contribute towards positive representation of refugees within the media.
- To empower refugees in establishing strong community organisations, providing them with platforms to represent the needs of their communities.
The charity's services are designed to help refugees and asylum seekers get all the support they need to build safe, productive and happy lives here in the UK, and include:
- Immigration and general advice on housing, citizenship, travel documents and welfare benefits.
- Holistic support for new refugees via their Refugee Integration Service.
- An Asylum Guide Project to support asylum seekers through the process.
- Food parcels and necessities via their Destitution Project.
- Elder Refugee Scheme to reduce social isolation for individuals over the age of 60.
- A Check-In and Chat scheme, providing weekly phone calls to clients who struggle with practising English or experiencing loneliness.
- A Health and Wellbeing Project which provides weekly sessions covering physical exercise, healthy living, and other important issues.
- Skills training programmes for individuals who come from migrant backgrounds.
- Working with refugee communities to help them organise and work together, improving the quality of life for those within them.
By supporting Manchester Refugee Support Network, you'll be helping to provide vital services to refugees and asylum seekers. In addition, you'll be helping the charity to challenge fear, celebrate diversity and respect, and ultimately, make the city of Manchester a welcoming place for asylum seekers and refugees.
To find about more about MRSN or make a donation to support their work, you can visit their website: http://mrsn.org.uk.