Displaced from their homes, refugees are truly global citizens – and that, surely, is exactly how we should all think of ourselves… Citizens of the world with the good fortune to live in a safe country; one not ravaged by violence and war; one not subjugated by a dictator.
Refugees have nothing; less than nothing. If they live in one of the camps or on the streets, they still live in constant fear. If they have made it to a community like Bedford, they have to start again; have to face prejudice, language barriers and cultural isolation.
We believe that, together, we can make a difference. Please help us…
What we do
How we started
Friends of Refugees exists for two main purposes:
to support refugees in a range of practical ways
to offer them emotional support friendship.
We focus on those who, having escaped war zones or persecution, arrive in Bedfordshire.
These people have nothing; less than nothing. They have to start again. We believe that, together, we can make a difference.
'Like many others, I saw the body of young Alan Kurdi washed up on a Turkish beach in the summer of 2015. It was heartbreaking.
'Groups of caring people sprang up around Bedford wanting to help. We decided we could be stronger as a single group and Friends of Refugees was born…
'Since then we have collected many tons of clothing, bedding, toys, food and hygiene aid.'
Tim Douglas, founder of Friends of Refugees
How you can help us
'You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.'
John Bunyan (born Bedford 1628)
To harness the love and goodwill of local people and direct donations to where they are most needed.
To actively encourage local people to recognise the humanitarian needs of refugees, welcome them and help them settle in.
+++ STOP PRESS +++
We believe the Home Office plan to house asylum seekers alongside the Yarl's Wood IRC to be unacceptable.
All objections having been ignored, however, we will soon have up to 200 new clients needing our support.
We have, therefore, joined other local charities to work towards a variety of support options that will alleviate the worst outcomes for all those housed there.