We aim to enable refugees to improve their employment prospects and get jobs. In 2013 research in Greater Manchester found unemployment for refugees to be at 44%, compared to 6% in the general population.
These days life is no easier. For refugees, like many other vulnerable groups in society, it’s often a challenge to achieve a basic standard of living – housing, food or education for children. Many refugees have a wealth of skills and expertise that they could contribute to the UK with the right support. Most want to build a new life based on financial independence and feel part of local and wider communities.
We believe there are individuals and organisations that can provide support or opportunities that will make a real difference to refugees chances of work at all levels. We are taking two approaches to create change.
In March 2017 we started a pilot mentoring project for twenty people who are refugees living in Manchester and Salford. The mentoring project is provided by trained volunteers, supported by the Project Manager who also provides some casework support. The pilot is due to end in January 2018, but we hope to continue to March 2018. This will give us a opportunity to evaluate our work.
Alongside mentoring, we work to engage other organisations – across sectors – to reduce unemployment for people who are refugees. We are part of the Manchester Refugee Employment Partnership.