The Welsh Refugee Council is an independent charity and the one of the leading agencies working for refugees in Wales. We work to help refugees to rebuild their lives in Wales through the provision of confidential and independent specialist advice and support services. We have offices in Cardiff, Wrexham, Swansea and Newport and we are the coordinator of Refugee Week Wales.
We provides frontline specialist advice and advocacy service and support to asylum seekers and refugees throughout the asylum process. We strongly believe that it is our humanitarian duty to actively participate in saving the lives of people who, by force, have to flee their homeland in search of their basic human rights. We provide a respectful and empathic environment to frightened, destitute and vulnerable people arriving in the Wales.
To help refugees and asylum seekers rebuild their lives in Wales.
- Remain independent and accountable and always acting with honesty, transparency and integrity.
- Treat everyone with equality, respect and empathy.
- Ensure that the voices of refugees and asylum seekers are heard by the relevant organisations
- Work in partnerships which are beneficial to refugees and asylum seekers.
- Promote the rich diversity that refugees and asylum seekers bring to the UK, and uphold their rights.
- To provide leadership to the refugee sector in Wales
- To achieve excellence in the standard of its advice and support services
- To promote opportunities for refugees to fulfil their potential in all parts of Wales
- To promote positive responses to asylum seekers and refugees among political leaders, service providers and the general public throughout all parts of Wales
- To communicate the Welsh response to asylum seekers and refugees to an audience outside Wales
Leading the Refugee Sector in Wales
The Welsh Refugee Council works in partnership with a range of refugee agencies to meet the needs of asylum seekers and refugees. A few of our partners include Asylum Justice, Displaced People in Action (DPIA), SOVA, Newport & District Refugee Support Group (NDRSG), Swansea Bay Asylum Seekers Support Group (SBASSG), Refugee Asylum Welcome (RAW), Oasis Cardiff and Wrexham Refugee & Asylum Seekers Support Group (WRASSG).
We also provides advice, training and office space for refugee community organisations in Wales. They operate on small grants and donations with a dedicated team of volunteers.
Independent, confidential, specialist advice and support services
Currently we see approximately 400 asylum seekers and refugees a week across out Wales officices. Our clients come to us to discuss, in confidence any issues they face as an asylum seeker or refugee. Our staff are OISC trained to give expert and well informed advice on a wide range of issues on claiming asylum, enabling integration, resolving age disputes for unaccompanied children and meeting health and welfare needs. With local knowledge and links to ther organisations in the areas, each office offers advice that is specific to the needs of clients in those cities.
The Welsh Refugee Council’s advice services are independent of any other agency, and staff always act in the best interests of their clients. Staff advocate on behalf of asylum seekers and refugees to ensure other organisations provide them with the services to which they are entitled, and help to make appointments with lawyers, doctors etc.
We do not provide legal representation however we support equal opportunities and refugees and asylum seekers are welcome regardless of race, religion or gender. We can also provided an interpreter for our clients who have limited or no english language skills.
Being granted asylum is just the first step. Welsh Refugee Council works to empower those granted asylum to rebuild their lives in Wales. When a person who has claimed asylum is granted ‘leave to remain’ we give advice and support to help them settle in the UK. For example, we advise them on obtaining housing, employment, basic furniture and equipment, travel documents and family reunion.
Welsh Refugee Council provides language classes in its offices, and promotes better provision of language classes throughout Wales, so that refugees can improve their communication skills. we also work in partnership with other agencies to provide advice and support for those seeking education, training and employment and promote volunteering opportunities for refugees.
Promoting Positive Responses
- We runs large-scale, high-quality, innovative arts events which tell a refugee story, in partnership with artistic, cultural and educational organisations, in order to increase public support for asylum.
- We co-ordinates the work of different organisations to produce Refugee Week Wales, an annual week of diverse events including art, culture, sport, food and fun. Refugee Week Wales promotes understanding about why people flee persecution.
- We works with Welsh politicians, the Welsh Government the Home Office to ensure that developing positive policies for asylum seekers and refugees in Wales is prioritised.
- We have published position papers, briefings, consultation responses, reports and documents that aim to improve policies affecting refugees and asylum seekers across Wales.
- We provides regular email updates for our network of supporters.
Partners and Funders
The Welsh Refugee Council is a member of the Asylum Support Partnership – The five U.K. refugee agencies, contracted to provide advice services by the Home Office. They include : The Asylum Support Partnership is the Refugee Council, Refugee Action, Scottish Refugee Council, Welsh Refugee Council and North of England Refugee Service. We are also a member of the following Strategic Partnerships: National Asylum Stakeholder Forum (NASF), Refugee Children’s Consortium and Wales Strategic Migration Partnership (WSMP).
The Asylum Support Partnership is the Refugee Council, Refugee Action, Scottish Refugee Council, Welsh Refugee Council and North of England Refugee Service.]. It is a member of the following Strategic Partnerships: National Asylum Stakeholder Forum (NASF), Refugee Children’s Consortium and Wales Strategic Migration Partnership (WSMP).
Most of our funding is comes from the Home Office and the Welsh Government. We are also grateful for the funding we receive from a number of charitable grant giving trusts and from the many generous members of the public who support our work. See our impact reports for further details of funding received each year. For more information on making a donation, visit our donate page.
To find out more about our work, read our annual impact reports.
“WRC is a friendly, understanding and respectful organisation, I feel at home there and I feel comfortable talking to them”