March 30, 2017
by rst2012
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Nationalities of RST grant recipients

RST Teal

From April to December 2016, RST provided 619 destitution grants to refugees and asylum seekers. The grants came to a total of £53,919.45, with an average of £87.11. The top three nationalities of grant recipients were: Eritrean (14.7%), Syrian (11.9%), and Iranian (11.1%).

Why do people flee from these countries? Here are some reasons.

Eritrea

  • Prolonged military service under abusive conditions
  • Arbitrary detention and torture during detention
  • Violation of rights to political expression
  • Discrimination against certain religious groups

Syria

  • Widespread conflict and indiscriminate violent attacks
  • Destruction of civilian facilities and infrastructure
  • Summary executions and torture
  • Gender-based violence and violence against children

Iran

  • High levels of capital punishment
  • Torture and inhuman punishment
  • Violation of rights to political expression
  • Discrimination against certain ethnic and religious groups

More information

For more statistics on RST destitution grants from April to December 2016, see our summary. For more information on conditions in Eritrea, see the reports of the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea established by the UN. For more information on the situation in Syria, see the reports of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic established by the UN. For more information on conditions in Iran, see the reports of the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Post by Katharine Weatherhead

March 24, 2017
by rst2012
Comments Off on Update from a volunteer

Update from a volunteer

Hi everyone,

My name is Walid from Syria studying ESOL for Work at Glasgow Clyde College I have a degree in English literature back in my country. I started volunteering with RST before 6 weeks and this is my last week. I loved the people here they are very helpful and taught me many things. It was useful volunteering here I did quite a good things translating, filing and other office tasks. And I am happy to involve in the Edinburgh cycling event next Sunday for the charities. At the last week of my volunteering I would like to thank everyone here and at the college who get me volunteering with RST.

 

Walid Khaly 20170324_120828_resized

March 16, 2017
by rst2012
Comments Off on RST Newsletter hot off the press!

RST Newsletter hot off the press!

Issue_28_cover

Our Spring Newsletter is hot off the press and includes information about all of our events and activities in 2016, and an opportunity to meet all of our new staff and board members! Subscribers will received electronic and hard copies shortly.

You can find previous RST newsletters or contact us to subscribe to the newsletter on the website.

March 13, 2017
by rst2012
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ELREC Cycles for Refugees

ELREC Cycles for Refugee Survival Trust

We’re absolutely delighted that the Edinburgh and Lothians Regional Equality Council (ELREC) has chosen the Refugee Survival Trust as the charity partner for their upcoming cycle event on 26 March in Edinburgh!

The 6 mile cycle ride, which will start at Bangholm Outdoor Centre and follow the Water of Leith and other cycle paths to Lauriston Castle, will be a fun family-friendly event. There are even a few bicycles available to borrow for those who don’t have their own.

Participants are being encouraged to get sponsorship for riding, with all proceeds going to the Refugee Survival Trust. Even if you are not able to participate, you can donate on the ELREC fundraising page and help them to meet their target of £2,000 to support refugees and asylum seekers in Scotland!

For more information, see the ELREC Cycles for Refugees event page.

February 21, 2017
by rst2012
Comments Off on New RST referral partners in Edinburgh!

New RST referral partners in Edinburgh!

edinburgh2Asylum seekers and refugees living in Edinburgh will now find it easier to apply for the Refugee Survival Trust’s grant programmes, as two organisations in the city have become referral partners.

Staff at The Welcoming Association and Saheliya will be able to distribute one day Lothian bus and tram passes to destitute asylum seekers, as well as to submit applications for Destitution Grants and Access to Education and Employment Grants.

The Refugee Survival Trust has distributed more than 700 grants to refugees and asylum seekers in the first 10 months of 2016-17, a significant proportion of which were for living costs and essential travel for destitute refugees and asylum seekers. The vast majority of grant recipients were living in the Greater Glasgow area.

Glasgow is currently the only area in Scotland that refugees are officially dispersed to and so traditionally the majority of refugees and asylum seekers live in the city. However, in recent years more refugees have moved to different cities in Scotland, and an increasing number are choosing Edinburgh as their home.

Zoe Holliday, Coordinator at RST said, “We’re delighted that The Welcoming Association and Saheliya are now referral partners for our grants programmes. With an increasing number of refugees and asylum seekers living in areas outside of Glasgow, it is important to make the application process as easy as possible for anyone who needs our help. We will be monitoring applications from Edinburgh with interest.”

Refugees or Asylum Seekers in Edinburgh requiring support can visit:

  • The Welcoming Association (20/1 Westfield Avenue, EH11 2TT) Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm
  • Saheliya (125 McDonald Road, Edinburgh EH7 4NW) Monday to Friday from 9am to 4:30pm (women only)

February 17, 2017
by rst2012
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New volunteer

20170217_134052My name is Doaa I’m from Iraq; I’m so interested in doing volunteering work as I have not done volunteer work before, so I think this opportunity will be great for me and I’m sure that my skills will be Improved later on. I’m studying a science course so I’m quite good at doing reports and statistics.

I would like to thank Rasha and Katherine for giving me that opportunity.

Kind regards,

Doaa.

February 17, 2017
by rst2012
Comments Off on Hello from a new volunteer

Hello from a new volunteer

20170217_093944

My name is Fadol I am from Sudan; I have interest in volunteer work and I did a lot of activity in South and West Sudan with Red Cross organization for 10 months, I studied agricultural engineering in Sudan and I worked in Agriculture Company for 5 years.

I am interested to do normal reports and statistics using Excel program, and also I am interested to do general translation from Arabic language to English. Also I have some experience in First Aid when I did voluntary work for the Red Cross.

I hope my skill will be helpful in the organization and thanks for Katherine from RST and Rasha from Clyde College.

Best regards

Fadol

February 1, 2017
by rst2012
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Inquiry into destitution and asylum in Scotland

Guest post by Katharine Weatherhead

Last week, on 25 January 2017, the Equalities and Human Rights Committee announced that an inquiry into destitution and asylum in Scotland is underway. Let’s look at some elements of the inquiry.EHRC_Logo

What is the Equalities and Human Rights Committee?

It is a committee of the Scottish Parliament. Until recently, it was known as the Equal Opportunities Committee. However, in September 2016, it’s remit was changed. See the Scottish Parliament website here.

What is the purpose of the inquiry?

The Committee states that it “wants to explore the gaps in the response to destitution from Scottish public authorities and to identify where changes could be made to policy, standards and guidance to address destitution.”

What evidence is the Committee seeking?

The Committee is seeking to hear from a broad range of groups with experience of destitution, the asylum process, and related service provision. These groups include: asylum seekers, charity organisations, and local authorities. To see the Committee’s list of desired evidence, click here.

When will the outcome of the inquiry be available?

According to the published timeline for the inquiry, the findings and recommendations are expected to be released in April 2017. Evidence can be submitted up until 8 March 2017.

What does RST do to alleviate destitution?

Alleviating destitution among refugees and asylum seekers in Scotland is one of RST’s core concerns. We provide destitution grants and bus passes as short-term measures when no other support is available. We have also published research on the issue of destitution, outlined in a blog post here.