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Your Monthly Update - October 2019


Dear <<First Name>>, 

Welcome to your update of events, activities and campaigns happening in Brighton & Hove for the month of October. There was a worrying development in the migrant crisis last month as members of the far-right group Britain First were seen watching out for refugee boats along the Kent coastline. Across the channel, French authorities have again chosen to clear the informal camps at Calais and Dunkirk, dispersing refugees. With the closure of the gymnasium at Dunkirk where shelter had been offered for the last few months, those remaining or returning to the area are now even more vulnerable. 

Back in Brighton, the council are appealing for landlords who might be able to offer affordable accommodation to new Syrian refugee families. The fourteenth family has just arrived under the government's Vulnerable Person's Resettlement Scheme and housing is urgently needed. If you can help please get in touch with Indi Hicks at 
Indi.Hicks@brighton-hove.gov.uk. In more positive news, there are lots of exciting events taking place across the city this month to celebrate the cultural and historical contributions of the Windrush generation in the UK, as part of Black History Month in October. More details are below.

Hate Crime Awareness Week is also this month (12 -19 October), a national week of action to encourage local authorities and community groups to tackle hate crime in the UK. You can show your support online using the hashtags #WeStandTogether #NoPlaceForHate and #SafePlaceForAll. If your organisation would like to get involved, there is a full social media campaign guide here.

Enjoy the newsletter!

In the newsletter this month:

We try to promote any refugee or migration-related event going on in the city by sharing it on our Facebook page. If you would like us to promote your event or flag a campaign, just drop us a message on Facebook via Messenger. 

Don't forget you can follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: 
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Local Updates 
SoS join the climate strike
On Friday 20 September climate strikes took place all over the world. In Brighton, 10,000 people turned out to show their support, making it the 3rd biggest protest in the UK. Sanctuary on Sea joined in alongside refugee support group the Hummingbird Project, highlighting the link between climate and migrant justice. 
Transport to Court: we stand with Mo
Momodou, a gentleman from Gambia, faces an Appeal Hearing this week and risks being deported. Thousand4£1000 (TK4) have launched a campaign to bring supporters to his appeal hearing, demonstrating the strong roots he has here in the UK. Mo has two children in Brighton and would like to continue to be a parent and part of their lives here in the UK. He engages with the local community in a creative way running sand art workshops, and is also an artist producing masterpieces based on his global experiences including his local culture from Gambia. He is an active member in local campaign groups such as Sussex Refugee and Migrant Self-support group, the Jollof Community Cafe and local charities such as T4K and Crisis Classroom. He would be a great loss to these community groups. The fundraiser is here.
Migrant Welcome project re-launched in Brighton
The Migrant Welcome Project is a friendly and welcoming peer support group for refugees and migrants that meets weekly to learn how to help people access practical and leisure services, learn more about life in Brighton & Hove and make new friends in the city. The group offers support to anyone who feels socially isolated or alone in Brighton. Sessions alternate weekly between meeting at Voices in Exile and going on trips around the City (mobility needs can be accommodated). Topics and visits are chosen and led by group members. Travel and other expenses are fully paid for by the project. All backgrounds, nationalities, and language abilities are welcome and attendees can bring pre-school aged children. The sessions run weekly on Thursdays from 10am to 1pm. Voices in Exile is located at 36 Upper Bedford Street, BN2 1JP. If you have any questions or wish to refer someone, please email Rosa at meshcaseworker@voicesinexile.org.
Request from Brighton & Hove council for affordable refugee housing
Brighton & Hove is continuing to take in refugee families under the government’s Vulnerable Person’s Resettlement Scheme. The fourteenth Syrian family has just arrived on the scheme and three more are due to arrive over the next few months. As these refugee households grow and the make-up of families change, one and two-bed properties are urgently needed. The council is seeking private landlords who are willing to take tenants in receipt of benefits and who will charge affordable rents. This will change the lives of refugees in the city. If you would like to know more, please contact Indi.Hicks@brighton-hove.gov.uk or phone 01273 291248 and please share the message in your networks.
New service for EEA migrants in Brighton & Hove
Migrant Help are now offering a new advice service in Brighton & Hove for vulnerable EEA migrants who need help to register under the EU Settlement Scheme. Sessions are aimed at people who may find it hard to apply by themselves for settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) - specifically EU nationals or family members who are currently homeless, living in Roma and traveller communities, young adults who have left care, the elderly, victims of modern slavery, and people with disabilities, literacy or health issues. 

Migrant Help adviser Charlotte Cheeseman will be based at Voices in Exile's drop-in advice sessions on Tuesdays (1.30-4.30) and Fridays (11-2) to advise on what is needed to apply and make the applications directly. To apply, people will need to bring a valid ID (passport, national identity card or biometric card), plus evidence of UK residency (NI number or dated documents like bills, doctors letters, council tax). Charlotte is Migrant Help's adviser for East Sussex & Surrey and will be delivering outreach advice in Hastings, Eastbourne and other towns as well as from other venues in Brighton to be confirmed. You can get in touch with her at: charlotte.cheeseman@migranthelpuk.org / 07483090715. 
Volunteering opportunity with Racial Harassment Forum
Do you want to learn new skills in working with communities? Do you enjoy engaging with a wide range of people? The Racial Harassment Forum (RHF) is launching its first volunteering programme to raise awareness within communities of race and faith based hate and harassment and to increase the reporting of hate crimes across Brighton. RHF's programme will train participants on the Equalities Act, reporting hate crimes, the role of Sussex police and Brighton & Hove Council, restorative justice, safety and boundaries in community outreach and more. No experience necessary, but willingness to become a community advisor to support individuals and groups to report hate crime is essential. If you are interested in the opportunity, contact Manal Ahmed rhfadvocacy@gmail.com or Monika Richards rhfbandh@gmail.com.
Coming up in Brighton and Hove
Windrush Presence: celebrating the Windrush generation, throughout October
 
The first Windrush day was marked this year on June 22 2019. It was on this day in 1948 that the HMT Empire Windrush arrived at Tilbury docks in Essex carrying a group of Caribbean immigrants to Britain. In 2019, Brighton & Hove museum marked this occasion with a Windrush generation tea party. Now, throughout the month of October to coincide with Black History Month, they are putting on a series of events celebrating the rich contributions that Carribbeans and Caribbean culture have brought to the UK. Events include:

Writing Our Legacy presents Windrush Presence Creative Writing Workshop

Sunday 6 October, 11am – 1.30pm & 2.30-5pm
Brighton Museum & Art Gallery, Education Pavilion

Responding to archival images of the Windrush Generation, poet Hannah Lowe will run a creative writing workshop that responds to the theme ‘Windrush Presence’. The workshop is open to writers of all backgrounds and levels of experience. All contributors will be invited to read an excerpt from their work at an evening event at New Writing South (see below) and publish it on the Writing Our Legacy website. Tickets £5.98. Book for the morning session here or the afternoon here. Contact info@writingourlegacy.org.uk.

Windrush Presence Evening Performance 
Thursday 17 October, 6.30 - 9pm
New Writing South, 9 Jew St, Brighton, BN1 1UT

At this evening three newly commissioned pieces written in response to Windrush images will be read alongside the new pieces produced at the workshop on the 6th (see above). Come along to hear new, creative writing (or to read your own!) Book here. Contact info@writingourlegacy.org.uk for more information. 

Banyan Tree Theatre Group presents 'Real-I-Sing', a Windrush songs workshop
Saturday 26 October, 1-4pm
Brighton Dome, Founders Room
All welcome at this vibrant singing workshop inspired by Windrush where participants will learn songs that bring to life the anticipation and wonder of a defining moment in Black British history. Drawing on the experiences of local Caribbean elders, the workshop will feature songs that spark and ignite memories of new beginnings. Participants will be guided through classic songs including calypso master Lord Kitchener’s ‘London is the place for me’, and more. The session is free - book here.

African Night Fever presents an African-Caribbean Dance Party
Friday 1 November, 7.30-11pm
Unitarian Church, New Rd, Brighton BN1 1UF

The Windrush celebrations end in style with a final event celebrating the creative influence of African Caribbean music, food and dance styles. 
Tickets are £5 and include food. Bring your dancing shoes! Book here.

Windrush Presence exhibition launch, 12 October
The Socially Engaged Art Salon, SEAS, will put on 'Windrush Presence', an exhibition exploring and celebrating the cultural and historical contributions that the Windrush generation have made to the UK since the 1950s. Curated by artist and activist Dr Gil Doron, the works are in a variety of media and come from diverse artists. It kicks off with a launch event on 12 October from 3-6pm. The evening will include: 'Diversity Lewes' – A talk by Tony Kalume, producer of a short film that celebrates the African Caribbean presence in Sussex and a spoken-word performance by Akila Richards to accompany a display of textiles created in collaboration with Caribbean elders. The event is free and all are welcome. SEAS is located at: 10a Fleet Street, Brighton BN1 4ZE. The exhibition will run from 12 October - 1 November and is free of charge.
Hate Crime Awareness Week 2019, 12-19 October
Hate Crime Awareness Week takes place to improve understanding of hate crime, to encourage local authorities and community groups to act and to remember those we have lost to hate crimes. Despite Brighton & Hove's reputation as a safe and welcoming city, there have been a number of worrying hate incidents in recent years. In May 2019, a man was assaulted and left unconscious on one of Brighton's main roads after a night out for appearing 'foreign'. Many more incidents go unreported. There is still work to be done tackling hate within our communities, engaging the relevant authorities and increasing reporting. Read more about the anti hate crime campaign here.
Upstanders, 17 October
To mark Hate Crime Awareness Week there will be a special event on Thursday 17 October at the Brighthelm Centre (5.30 - 8.30 pm). The Upstanders Network will lead an open discussion about how we feel when we witness hate abuse, what we can do as 'upstanders' and community members in the face of hatred and how we can include all communities of Brighton & Hove in this task. There will also be information stalls around the foyer and refreshments. Places are limited but can be reserved free of charge here. There is more info about the evening here.
 
Coming up in London & the south east
City of Sanctuary South East regional gathering 26 October
The 2019 City of Sanctuary South East regional gathering will take place in Hastings on Saturday 26 October, hosted by the Community of Sanctuary in Hastings which runs lots of fantastic projects in the area. Find out about their work here. This is an important opportunity for different groups to share information and learn from each other as well as to find out about national developments that impact our movement. The themes of the day will be: a) increasing the participation and engagement of people seeking sanctuary, b) working with local authorities and c) using streams and awards. Bookings are open herePlease get in touch with us if you would like to join us and travel together.
Regular events in Brighton & Hove
Global Social Club, Mondays
The GSC is a youth club for 14 - 25 year olds across the city run in collaboration between the Hummingbird Project, Refugee Council, Pathways to Independence and the Young Peoples Centre. They put on a range of fun, interactive sessions throughout the year open to all. It takes place on Mondays 5 - 7pm at Brighton Youth Centre (69 Ship St, Brighton BN1 1AE). More info here.
Global Tots
Global Tots is a stay and play group for refugee and migrant mothers with children under 5. They meet on the last Monday of every month at the Friends Meeting House (Ship St, Brighton BN1 1AF). The idea is to provide English and social support alongside usual stay and play group activities, including arts and crafts/ sensory play, toys, free snacks and circle time.
Jollof café, Tuesdays
The Jollof serves delicious, vegan African food at just £4 a meal. Based at the Cowley Club from 12.30pm every Tuesday. The Cowley is located at 12 London Rd, Brighton BN1 4JA.
The Real Junk Food Café, Wednesdays
Hosted on Wednesdays at St John the Baptist Parish Hall, in collaboration with Brighton Voices in Exile and Brighton Table Tennis Club, the Real Junk Food Project turn food that would otherwise have been wasted into delicious meals cooked by professional chefs. The meal is pay-as you feel and leftover produce is available to take away on a donation basis. The hall is located at 2 Bristol Rd, Brighton BN2 1AP.
Maté Café, Sundays 
The Mate Cafe serves delicious vegan Syrian food and mate tea on Sunday afternoons at the Cowley Club. Entertainment is also provided in the form of live music, dance/ music workshops and activities for children.
National news and updates from our Sanctuary network
1
Far right supporters seen on refugee 'patrol'
There was a deeply worrying development last month as it was reported that several members of the far-right group Britain First had been 'watching out' for refugees along the Kent coastline as part of campaign they have dubbed 'Operation White Cliffs'. The men were spotted with binoculars scanning the waters for the small boats that refugees often arrive in. A spokesperson for Care4Calais said: "We are shocked and concerned to learn of this unsettling development...When deeply traumatised men, women and children arrive on our shores they are often in need of medical attention and should be met by professionals. Whatever your opinion regarding the arrival of people from France, we believe it is essential to maintain respect for British law and trust in the work carried out by our emergency response services." Read more here.
2
Sanctuary in Parliament postponed

With the increasing uncertainty at Westminster, the Sanctuary movement have opted to postpone this year's Sanctuary in Parliament event. The event will now take place in the new year. 
3
First University of Sanctuary Conference
The first University of Sanctuary conference was held at York St John University on 4 September 2019. Academics, professional staff, students, sanctuary scholars and others came together to discuss what Higher Education institutions could do more to establish a culture of welcome for everyone in the UK. There are currently 11 Universities of Sanctuary across the UK, with lots more across the country in the process of applying. A full review of the event will be available soon hereWatch a video of the day's highlights here:
Directory of Services

Finally, we'd like to remind everyone that the Directory of Services available to refugees and migrants in Brighton and Hove is available online.

This directory lists organisations which offer support to, or are advocating on behalf of refugees, asylum seekers and migrants. It also lists organisations which offer specific services of interest to refugees, asylum seekers and migrants, as well as a small number of refugee- and migrant-led organisations. Please read and share as widely as you can. Please let us know if you would like your service to be included in the directory, or if your existing entry needs updating.

Best wishes,

Ruby Cardona Senker
Volunteer
Sanctuary on Sea 
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