Afghan refugees: First 100 arrive in Liverpool after fleeing the Taliban
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The first Afghanistan refugees have arrived in Liverpool following the Taliban’s takeover of their homeland.
Around 100 people, including families, are being accommodated at a hotel in South Liverpool, having completed a Covid-19 quarantine period elsewhere in the UK.
At the start of the airborne evacuation from Afghanistan’s capital city Kabul, Liverpool Mayor Joanne Anderson said the city ‘stood ready to help’ and the region will now offer assistance to the new arrivals.
The refugees are being given welfare support by Liverpool City Council, along with the Home Office and other partners, and will be supported in education and healthcare.
All of the Afghan nationals will remain at the hotel until permanent accommodation is found, which could be in the Liverpool City Region or elsewhere in the north west.
Liverpool welcomes refugees
Liverpool Councillor Abdul Qadir, Cabinet member for Neighbourhoods said: “We have all been moved by the plight of the Afghanistan people who have literally been fleeing for their lives.
“Liverpool is pleased to be playing its part in housing a number of Afghan refugees.
“They have been through a very traumatic period, but I know the people of this city will make them very welcome during their time here.”
Government financial support
The refugees have arrived in Liverpool as part of the UK Government’s resettlement programme and the cost of the relocation scheme is fully funded by the Home Office.
The UK will welcome 20,000 people who have escaped the Taliban in Afghanistan over the next five years.
The Home Office has confirmed that Afghans who worked with the British government and military will be able to move to the UK permanently.
The last US troops left the country on Monday, following on from Britain’s withdrawal, ending 20 years of deployment in the country and concluding the evacuation effort from Kabul.
How can people in Liverpool help?
The residents of Liverpool have been asking how they can help refugees coming to Merseyside and Liverpool City Council has put together some advice for local people offering their support to refugees.
I want to donate clothes or money to support refugees
A list of refugee support organisations in Liverpool who take donations can be found on the council’s website.
I want to volunteer to help with resettling and supporting refugees
Families that arrive in the UK on the resettlement scheme will be fully supported by a team from the resettlement organisation.
However, if you are looking to volunteer with refugees and asylum seekers see:-
I want to offer work experience and employment opportunities to refugees
If you are an employer and have employment or work experience opportunities for refugees we would be keen to link you with Liverpool City Council Refugee Employment Officers. You can contact [email protected]
I have a spare room and can accommodate a refugee?
Resettled refugees coming to the UK, such as from Afghanistan, are allocated their own property. However, the offer of a room is very much needed for other refugees, such as those who have recently been granted status and are waiting for more permanent accommodation, or people who have been refused asylum.
If you have a spare room available, you can host a refugee via a charity called Refugees At Home. They offer placements to refugees in the UK who need a place to live temporarily, and support placement hosts to find someone who is a right fit for them. They are looking for hosts with spare rooms in the Liverpool and the wider Merseyside area. They have a wealth of information about becoming a host on their website, as well as on their Facebook page.
I am interested in letting my property out
If you are a looking to let your property then you can contact Liverpool City Council’s Housing Options Service Rehousing Team, who support newly granted refugees to secure permanent accommodation. Please contact the Team by email: [email protected], particularly if you have a larger property with more than four bedrooms.
You can also contact Serco, who provide the asylum accommodation in the north west on behalf of the Home Office. They are regularly looking for homes to rent so they can house people seeking sanctuary. Their Partnership Manager in Liverpool is Ged Swanson [email protected], he will be able to signpost you to their procurement team.