Central & Eastern European 
Migrants E-Bulletin

March 2016 - Volume 15
Welcome to the E-Bulletin of the
Good Community Relations Project (GCRP).

This is a quarterly E-Bulletin which provides information about upcoming training,
capacity building and community development opportunities for Central and Eastern European migrant communities in Glasgow and the West of Scotland.

This E-Bulletin is FREE and everyone can become a member!

If you are interested in learning about development and training opportunities for yourself and your community
and would like to find out more,
please email Joanna at

The Good Community Relations Project (GCRP) is funded by the Scottish Government Equality Fund. The project aims to support and empower European migrant communities through advice and information services.

This project encourages migrants to take an active role in civil life and to represent their communities in mainstream society.

GCRP Advice and Information Services

Telephone Helpline and Weekly Drop-In
The GCRP Advice Service is delivered through a weekly drop-in surgery and telephone helpline. We can provide information and advice in Polish, Lithuanian and English.

Please call our Telephone Helpline at: 0141 337 6626

Our Telephone Helpline and Drop-In services are available at the following times:
Polish/Polski (with Kasia)

Lithuanian/Lietuvos (with Jurate)
Appointment-only Surgeries:
Tuesday, 15:00-18:00

(Telephone Registration
Tuesdays 14:00 - 15:00)

Telephone Advice:
Wednesday, 12:00-14:00

Drop-In Surgery:
Wednesday, 15:00-17:00

On Tuesday 1 March 2016, GCRP implemented changes to the Polish-language advice surgery. The Polish-language surgery no longer operates as a drop-in service; meetings must be arranged with Kasia beforehand.

Registration for the new system takes place from 2pm to 3pm on Tuesdays. Please telephone Kasia at 0141 337 6626 to register.
Where To Find Us

All of our regular drop-in, information and advice sessions take place at WSREC offices. You can find WSREC offices at:
First Floor
Napiershall Street Centre
39 Napiershall Street
G20 6EZ
"We see an inclusive society free from discrimination"
Monthly Immigration Surgery

WSREC will be offering a FREE monthly immigration surgery that will run on the second Thursday of EVERY month. 

The next surgery is on Thursday 14 April 2016.

This free immigration surgery, sponsored by Five Star (International) Ltd, gives you the chance to talk one-to-one with a specialist immigration solicitor about your immigration issues.

Five Star (International) is a firm of specialist immigration solicitors based in Glasgow, with experienced Caseworkers who specialise in immigration applications and related issues.

Monthly immigration surgeries will take place at WSREC offices

Please remember that consultations are available by APPOINTMENT ONLY.

Please call 0141 337 6626 to book your free appointment.
Money Advice Surgery
A free money advice surgery is now being held at WSREC offices every Friday from 10am to 1pm.

Feel free to drop in and chat for us for free and confidential advice on the following areas:

  • Housing
  • Council Tax
  • Jobseekers
  • Disability
  • And any other area that is causing you concern.
For more information, call us
at 0141 337 6626 or email

Free Home Energy Advice

Every Friday 2pm - 4pm at Napiershall Street Centre

Our free impartial service will save you money and energy by:

You may qualify for £140 towards your winter fuel bills as a part of Warm Home Discount.
  • Giving advice on using energy more efficiently.
  • Helping you understand bills, different tariffs and dealing with your energy supplier.
  • Help with applying for grants and discounts.
  • Free Home Energy visits.
For more information, please contact Ola Pawluk at
0141 337 6626 or email
Develop skills and work opportunities with MEETS
On 29 May 2015, WSREC launched a new three-year employment and training project supporting people from minority ethnic communities to enhance their prospects within the world of work.

If you are looking for work or thinking about training to develop your skills, MEETS (Minority Ethnic Employment & Training Support) provides service users with FREE support tailored to your needs, including:
  • Advice on creating a CV
  • Support in applying for jobs
  • Access to vacancies and training courses
  • Access to work experience and Modern Apprenticeships
  • Helping develop your confidence and improving your self-esteem.
WSREC is working with a wide-range of partners to support unemployed individuals from a minority ethnic background through free in-house training, work placements at partner organizations and advisory services.
To contact the MEETS team and book an appointment with an
Employment Advisor, call 0141 337 6626 or email

Let's Cook, Grow and Sew Together

"Let's Cook, Grow and Sew Together" project staff speak English, Polish and Russian, but we can offer gardening advice in Urdu, Hindi, Punjabi, Romanian,
French, Catonese and Mandarin.
Napiershall Street Community Garden

Every Friday 1pm - 3pm, Napiershall Street Community Centre

Do you miss the taste of organic, home-grown vegetables? Whether you have your own garden or not, you can grow your own vegetables!

Come join our weekly gardening sessions:
  • Learn how to grow your own vegetables in a city environment.
  • Take seedlings and seeds home to start your own garden.
  • Get advice specific to your own garden and receive a free gardening starter pack.
  • Volunteers welcome.
  • Take vegetables home after every session.
Sewing Group

Every Friday 10am - 12pm, Napiershall Street Community Centre
Join our volunteer-ran sewing group every Friday 10am to 12pm for an afternoon of sewing and repairing clothes!
  • We provide sewing machines, thread and needles.
  • Free to join, just bring your own project!
For more information about the "Let's Cook, Grow and Sew Together" project, please contact Ola Pawluk at 0141 337 6626 or at
Do you know of any events, activities, information or community groups that would be of interest to Central and Eastern European migrants?

Are you or your organization involved in any activities or events that you would like promoted through our E-Bulletin?

Let us know!

Please get in touch with Joanna Kieran at,
or by calling 0141 337 6626
GCRP Enquiries Report:

January-March 2016

We collect data from weekly GCRP Advice Surgeries on enquiries from
Central and Eastern European migrant communities
The project monitors client enquiries on a regular basis. We generated enquires from the last 3 months (69 enquiries in total) to illustrate current trends in advice delivery. In addition we would like to use this bulletin to present chosen case studies.
Case Study
“I'm very happy that, in January 2016, I asked an Advice Worker to assist me in dealing with my affairs, particularly with an issue relating to my self-employed status.

"She helped me to clarify what my working status was; I didn't understand the system and I couldn't speak English quite as well.

"GCRP's Advice Worker helped me to figure out that I had paid unnecessary, extra Class 2 contributions to HMRC as I couldn't independently change my self-employed status from 2012; I was working at a recruitment company in parallel at this time.

"I am grateful to her, because I am now no longer being unfairly taxed twice."
GCRP Networking Success
On 1 March 2016, GCRP organized the inaugural Central and Eastern European Networking Event, enabling Central and Eastern European communities to come together, share their community experiences and learn from each other.
The event was attended by representatives from the Bulgarian, Czech, Italian, Lithuanian, Polish, Slovak and Ukrainian communities. All participants agreed that this event was very successful and extremely useful for community organizations.

GCVS and CEMVO Scotland were also invited to participate as guest organizations; they each delivered a short presentation to participants and help a successful and informative
Q and A session with attendees.
GCRP are happy to provide a platform for networking and to enable participants to share their knowledge and experience of the Third Sector in Scotland. We aim to organize similar events in the future to promote community engagement and capacity building for Central and Eastern European communities in the West of Scotland.
If you are interested in being added to GCRP CEE Networking Group and to participate in the future events, please email Joanna Kieran on
Fundraising and Community Development
Start Your Own Community Group: Part 4

Are you interested in setting up and running your own community organization? GCRP's four-step guide is here to help you through every stage of the process!

Part 4: Fundraising

It is a good idea to create a budget, detailing what the organization needs to spend to exist and achieve its aims – having this budget makes it easier to approach other support organizations, funders and sponsors.

When you have your budget ready, it is worth seeking advice from your local CVS or Voluntary Action group who will be able to give you information on where to apply for funding, and possibly offer fundraising training. They will also have information about local venues that offer discounts to community organizations.

There are several different types of fundraising methods you can use.

Membership – having a paid membership can cover basic costs, and provide a large source of income for larger organizations.

Applying for grants and awards - your group can make applications to local council, grant giving bodies and trusts, lottery or businesses. When applying for grants do your research first and make sure you read and understand the guidance provided. A good application that clearly explains the organization’s purpose and has been reasonably budgeted increases your chances of success. In addition it is important to plan ahead as there can certain timescales for when application can be submitted – take into account the waiting period before you are given an answer!

Fundraising events – Your group can organize its own fundraising events, where people can be charged for participation. Why not hold a raffle, or a sponsored walk?

Creating products – The organization may want to design and create various products that can be sold to raise money. If anyone in the group has some artistic talents, why not create cards, badges or t-shirts?
To find out more information on creating your own community organization, contact Joanna Kieran at to receive your free Start Your Own Community Group toolkit,
or visit 
Funding Opportunities for Community Groups
Voluntary Action Fund -
Social Isolation and Loneliness Fund applications now open

The Voluntary Action Fund (VAF) is now inviting applications for the first Scottish Government programme of its kind to tackle social isolation and loneliness.

Third sector organizations with an annual income of under £250,000 are being urged to apply for the £500,000 fund. They can apply for up to £20,000 to carry out activities over a 12-month period that will help to build social capital and make a real difference to the quality of life of some of the most vulnerable in society.

Outcomes for the Social Isolation and Loneliness Fund are:
  • An increase in social connectedness of people experiencing disadvantage; an
  • A reduction in the effects of social isolation in people experiencing disadvantage
Applications should be submitted by Friday 20 May 2016

For more information, please visit
European Commission Call for Proposals –
Support to Refugee Integration Projects

Following the arrival of an extraordinary number of refugees, the Creative Europe programme invites proposals for high quality European cultural, audio-visual and cross-sectorial projects dedicated to help the integration of refugees and foster intercultural dialogue.

The European Commission is seeking to select a small number of high quality consortia, formed by bodies working in the creative and cultural sectors that will create and test initiatives designed to support the integration of refugees in the participating countries and share their results.

Projects supported will have a maximum duration of 24 months. The minimum grant that will be awarded is €100,000 (up to 80% of eligible costs) and the maximum grant that will be awarded is €200,000 (up to 80% of eligible costs).

The lead applicant must be a company, association or organisation active in the cultural and creative sectors. The partnership may also include organisations which are not active in the cultural and creative sectors but which nonetheless will actively participate in the aims pursued. The partners must be active in the public, social, healthcare or educational fields or any other sector that could support the social and cultural integration of refugees and/or generate inter-cultural dialogue.

The closing date for applications is 12 noon (Brussels time) on 28 April 2016.
For more information about fundraising opportunities,

remember to regularly visit
Personal Development
ESOL and English Language Development Opportunities
Literacy and Numeracy learning with Glasgow Life

There are literacy and numeracy classes available for communities at a range of locations around Glasgow, provided by Glasgow Life.

These free classes offer you the chance to develop your skills, abilities and confidence in small, friendly and informal groups at your local library or community centre. Learning is based around what service users want to learn, using everyday materials and resources.

Glasgow Life's Literacy and Numeracy learning opportunities are divided between it's three city branches. To find out where the nearest available Literacy and Numeracy lessons are in your area, please contact your regional office at:

North East Communities: 0141 276 1785
North West Communities: 0141 276 1525
South Communities: 0141 276 1330
English Language Classes at Glasgow Women’s Library

Glasgow Women’s Library offers a great opportunity for individuals to develop their English language skills through English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) classes.

There are two classes available; a Beginners’ class takes place on a Wednesday from 10am – 12pm, and a Pre-Intermediate class on a Tuesday and Thursday at the same time.

These classes give learners the chance to improve their general English abilities, including speaking, listening, reading and writing in a friendly, informal and lively group.

Both classes run during college term time (August – June). If you wish to join ESOL classes, please head along to Glasgow Women’s Library at 9:45am on a Tuesday or Thursday morning, when a tutor can assess the most suitable learning level for your needs.
You can find out more information on literacy and numeracy learning, or other learning opportunities provided by Glasgow Life, at

Glasgow Women's Library is located at:

23 Landressy Street
G40 1BP

For more information on projects offered by Glasgow Women's Library, contact GWL by phone at 0141 550 2267 or by email at
PATH Housing Employability Training Opportunities
PATH (Scotland) is offering a thirty-six month Positive Action Training Scheme to redress the under-representation of black and minority ethnic communities in employment with Scottish Housing, in partnership with Local Authority Housing Departments and Registered Social Landlords across Scotland.

At the end of thirty-six months training, you will have a competitive level of work experience and a specialist qualification enabling you to compete for jobs in Scottish Housing. A tax and National Insurance allowance is available (£9,500 in year one, £10,500 in year two and £12,000 in year three).

Applicants should be willing to undertake four days work experience for the thirty-six month duration, including one day of attendance at college or University during the academic year.

The closing date for applications is Thursday 21 April 2016 at 12:30 pm.

If you wish to be kept up-to-date about this and other traineeship opportunities in the future, visit, call PATH at 0141 332 9477 or email

Glasgow Bound:

An Open Dialogue on Migration
The University of Glasgow's Department for Central and Eastern European Studies is hosting an independent, open and community based conference on migration on 6 May 2016.

Focusing on the growing attention to refugees and migrants, and the special effort of the city of Glasgow to embrace multiculuralism, this is a community based and community focused project to which everyone is invited to attend and contribute.

Glasgow Bound will take place on 6 May 2016 at the University of Glasgow from 10am until 3pm. Attendance is free for everyone.

More information will be available soon at

Crossroads at Govanhill Free Church
Crossroads facilitates a Tuesday drop-in session at the Govanhill Free Church from 12:30pm to 2:30pm.

The focus of the group is to develop integration between the diverse communities within Govanhill. This is achieved through Arts and Crafts Workshops which have demonstrably transcended language barriers. Other activities include knitting, and sewing where participants share skills and creative ideas.

IT facilities are also provided allowing users to access the internet. We also provide a light vegetarian lunch which participants can enjoy and socialise.
The Feel Good Women’s Group

The Feel Good Women’s group is a constituted group and meets on a Thursday from 12:15pm to 2:15pm in Govanhill Neighbourhood Centre to take part in a fitness class, have a healthy lunch together and take part in additional activities and talks.

There is a free crèche to cover the fitness class. The group is a diverse mix of women from different backgrounds and of different ages.
Tuesday Evening Drop-In Group

This Drop-In which runs on Tuesday evenings from 5:30pm 8:00pm aims to provide a safe space for locals to interact and socialise.

A range of activities take place in the group and it is open all people from all ages, although it primarily targets the local Roma population. There is dedicated child care worker available on site for participants with children.
Stay In Touch and Stay Informed
GCRP operates Facebook pages in Polish and Lithuanian languages.

We aim to use our social media presence to provide the Central and Eastern European communities with useful links, information, advice and information on upcoming events, activities and opportunities, including community-organized events and initiatives.
Lietuvos/Lithuanian Facebook    
If you want to stay informed about the work carried out by GCRP and useful events, activities and opportunities in your community, why not join our mailing list?

Please contact Joanna Kieran at:
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