Refugee-led community integration grant scheme

Background

The Lancashire Refugee Resettlement Programme (the 'Programme') has resettled over 600 refugees in the last five years, mainly from Syria. The Programme seeks to support integration, recognising that, as the new Home Office Indicators of Integration Framework 2019 states, integration is a multi-dimensional and multi-directional process.

In 2018 the Programme commissioned a Community Integration Assessment with resettled refugees within Lancashire. Feedback from our service users, which is of particular relevance to this Scheme, included their desire to learn to function independently. This Scheme aims to support this by giving refugees and asylum seekers the opportunity to develop and run their own projects which may benefit other refugees and asylum seekers in the community.

Furthermore, the work of the Lancashire County Council Refugee Integration Team (LCC RIT) is guided by the principle of integration as a two-way process: while refugees must take steps to integrate into their local community, that community should also be prepared to adapt in order to remove barriers to participation for refugees.

Whilst the Programme funding is specifically for refugees who have come through the Programme, we recognize the animosity and segregation that can naturally occur within local communities when asylum seekers and asylum-route refugees are not included within activities and events. Therefore, within the proposals we welcome the inclusion of all those who have sought sanctuary in Lancashire.

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