UEA University of Sanctuary 1 year anniversary event – 23.01.19

I am delighted to invite you and your colleagues to attend the UEA University of Sanctuary one year celebratory social event on 23 January 2019 from 4pm in the Julian Study Centre, UEA, Chancellors Drive, Norwich, NR4 7TJ. We will be celebrating and highlighting the work that has been undertaken by UEA staff and students to develop a sustainable culture of welcome for asylum seekers and refugees in the university, and in British society as a whole.

The event will include a drinks reception and a display of staff and student work relating to issues of sanctuary, followed by presentations from Pro Vice-Chancellor Neil Ward, local sanctuary seekers and Stephen Wordsworth, Executive Director of the Council for At Risk Academics.

To conclude the celebratory event,  LJ Hope Productions will be running an interactive theatrical live debate “Borders: Are Controls Necessary?” in the UEA Drama Studio from 6.30pm to 8.30pm.

All are welcome. If you would like to attend please confirm your attendance via email.

If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact me at M.Dutton@uea.ac.uk

With kind regards,

 Madeleine Dutton – Sanctuary Liaison Officer, School of International Development

Looking for schools to join The Friend Ship project: HumaniTea Party

The Friend Ship are looking for schools interested to take part in the HumaniTea Party project.

Particpating schools will take part in an art workshop at Norwich Central Library in April or May and the project will culminate in an art installation during Refugee Week in June.

The HumaniTea party aims to challenge stereotypes and change people’s perceptions of displaced people by focusing on a selection of famous refugees to ‘invite’ to our tea party, celebrating their contributions to our world with a place setting made representing them, including ceramic plates, glass bowls, lanterns, woven placemats, photographs and other artwork (inspired by Judy Chicagos ‘The Dinner Party’ celebrating womens’ contributions to society).

Invited refugee ‘guests’ will have place settings at the main installation – Albert Einstein, Mika (musician), Lomana Lua Lua (footballer), Alf Dubs (politician), Marina Lewycka (author), M.I.A (musician), Hong Dam (film maker) and Maryam Hashemi (artist).

School workshops with four Norfolk schools (30 children per school Yr5/6 and Secondary) will help create work to be part of this installation as follows:

  1. Designing and painting posters for these 8 and many others
  2. Creating miniature books about these 8 and other local refugees and migrants to go in the installation as a mini library
  3. Exploring the Millenium Library Archive to learn about famous refugees and migrants who found a new home in Norfolk and then write letters from them to their families about life in Norfolk

School Workshop Dates:

24th April, 1st May, 8th May or 15th May 2019

Each of those days will run 10am-2pm with 3 x 50 minute workshops rotating so groups cover all workshops (plus an hour for lunch)

Venue: Millenium Library, The Forum, Norwich

Please email Jake at info@norwichschoolsofsanctuary.org if you are interested in participating.

More information about the project can be found here and to find out more about  The Friend Ship and their work visit their website.

Free lecture at UEA on supporting newly arrived migrant populations and pupils

The UEA University of Sanctuary network is delighted to announce the first in our series of Public Lectures, to be held on Monday 12 November 2018, 13-14:00, in Lecture Theatre 3 on the UEA campus.

The lecture will be given by Professor Madeleine Arnot, who is Emeritus Professor of Sociology of Education at Cambridge University and a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.

In 2004, Prof Arnot established the Research Consortium on the Education for Asylum-Seeker and Refugee Children; in 2013 she co-founded the Cambridge Migration Research Network and in 2018 a new cross-disciplinary Centre for the Study of Global Human Movement.  She has recently co-authored two Bell Foundation research reports on educating newly-arrived (English as Additional language) children and is currently employed as a consultant on the Norwegian University of Science and Technology project (Language, Integration, Media: A Majority-Inclusive Approach to Migration (LIM)) and on a UNICEF funded global curriculum project for children in refugee camps.

The lecture will focus on Empowering the Newly Arrived within Mainstream Schools: The Challenges of Diversity, Communication and Social Morality and will be followed by questions/discussion. A brief abstract is attached.

Attendance is free, no need to book; the venue has wheelchair access.

We would be very grateful if you could share details with any teachers and researchers locally who might be interested in coming along.

For more information, feel free to contact j.drugan@uea.ac.uk.


The concept of empowerment is not usually associated with newly-arrived migrant populations who tend to be either positioned as disadvantaged, vulnerable, needy, or more recently as resilient and highly motivated.  I believe the school system, in particular, needs to focus on is what will empower such children such that they can flourish in their lives.

The aim of my presentation is to highlight the range of educational issues that are raised by the arrival, presence and needs of newly-arrived migrant children and youth and what strategies might be needed to help our children, communities and our society for the changes that are occurring as a result of migration.

I focus on four themes which indicate how schools might respond:

  1. A Holistic Approach: compassion, belonging and rights
  2. The EAL Education Triangle: language, integration and achievement
  3. Transactional School-Home-School Communication
  4. A new social morality?

Professor Madeleine Arnot

Emeritus Professor of Sociology of Education at Cambridge University and a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences

11.10.18 Meeting for Norfolk schools interested in becoming Schools of Sanctuary

We are a network of Schools of Sanctuary across Norfolk committed to being safe, welcoming and inclusive places for everyone, but especially  for sanctuary seekers. We share resources and ideas to help your pupils make sense of the refugee crisis and to also empower them to take positive action to support refugees, asylum seekers and other groups of immigrants in our local communities.

We aim to:

  • To build understanding of the experiences of displaced people
  • To combat stereotypes about refugees and asylum seekers
  • To engage with our communities’ history as places of sanctuary
  • To support local refugee communities

Norfolk has an active and dedicated Schools of Sanctuary network. Following a brilliantly successful launch in 2017, at which the first seven schools in the county were officially recognised as such, we this year organised Norfolk Welcomes; this was a day of action on displacement that saw 61 Norfolk schools took part. This year we are looking to build upon that and provide more ideas, resources and opportunities for our schools to show that #NorfolkWelcomes refugees.

If your school is interested in joining us and becoming a School of Sanctuary, please come along to this meeting to find out more and to start the process.

You can find more information about the award scheme here and more about the City of Sanctuary movement, of which we are a part, here.

Email Jake Rose-Brown at info@norwichschoolsofsanctuary.org to confirm attendance or for more information.

Download a flyer for this meeting here.

KS2 ART/PSHE lesson: Welcoming Syrian refugees resettling locally

Welcome Syrian families resettling in your area by getting your class to send them a welcome card

In September 2015 the UK Government Prime Minister announced an additional 20,000 Syrian refugees would be resettled in the UK under the Syrian Vulnerable Persons Relocation Scheme. Since then 50 Syrian refugees have been resettled in Norwich and Norfolk County Council have recently agreed to resettle a further 100 by 2020.

The first 50 refugees who come to Norwich were families with small children. To welcome them to Norfolk, classes from Avenue Junior School and Wensum Junior School in Norwich, made cards with messages of solidarity, friendship and welcome that were placed in their new homes for their arrival.

In order to welcome the next set of families in the same way we have produced a resourced lesson for other Norfolk schools to do the same. If you would like your class to create a welcome card please follow the lesson and then send  your completed cards to Jake Rose-Brown at Avenue Junior School, Avenue Road, Norwich, NR2 3HP.

Resources for welcome cards for Syrian families resettling under VPR scheme

Please include the name of your school and class somewhere in/on your card and feel free to edit, improve and alter the lesson in any way you see fit. We made our cards with A2 card but you can do yours in whatever way you see fit.

Please note that this resource would be easily adapted for other places in the UK. So if your school also has Syrians resettling locally under the VPR scheme and you would like to welcome them please feel free to use this resource and get in touch with your local authority in order to get the card to them.

It’s a lovely way to welcome these people to our country and a great way to help our pupils make sense of what is happening in Syria and to help them better understand the experiences of sanctuary seekers.

New Beginnings: a night of music and poetry

On Monday 3rd of September at 7:30pm, The Octagon Unitarian Chapel is teaming up with Amnesty International and Norwich Arts Centre to deliver ‘New Beginnings: A night of music, poetry and socialising with refugess and asylum seekers.’

During the evening, we’ll hear music and poetry from Salah Nagar, Martin Figura, Sarah Griggs – Smith, Moussa Ibrahim, Martin McDonnell, Kathryn Simmonds, George Szirtes and Salmon Toheed.

As well as offering an opportunity to socialise and hear some great performers, it’s also a chance to fundraise for New Routes, a local charity, whose mission is to support the integration of refugees and asylum seekers into our local community. Tickets are priced at £3, £5 and £7 with all proceeds going to charity. Tickets can be purchased by clicking on the link below. They will also be available on the night.

New Beginnings

All proceeds will go to New Routes. It’s a great local charity doing some great work in and around Norwich. All performers have waived their fees in support of the event. Remember – all proceeds to charity.

Hellesdon High School’s Refugee Week celebrations

Various events were organised around Hellesdon High School during the week commencing 18th June, in recognition of the 65 million displaced people in the world who have been forced to leave their homes due to conflict or fear of persecution.

A ‘Pop-Up Gig’ was held on Tuesday 19th, in one of the school’s locker rooms where moving performances, touching on the theme of home and identity, were heard by a crowd of cheering students over lunchtime. The talented singers and musicians included Deanna Matthews (aged 11), Liah Brown (aged 13), Nelma Lemos (aged 15), all-girl band The Caravan Club and the rock band Black Rose.

A small group of Key Stage 3 students joined other schools for an art workshop at The Octagon Chapel, where the children created their own flags that embodied themes around being a refugee. The flags were then featured at an art installation for the Schools of Sanctuary Showcase evening which was held on Tuesday 19th. The Norwich Schools of Sanctuary Showcase was organised to celebrate this year’s Refugee Week theme – the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees. It included original pieces of music, poetry and drama created by children of Norwich.

On Wednesday, the school invited a guest speaker to hold year group assemblies. Dr Eiad Zinah spoke to students and answered questions about his long journey to the UK, which he had to make in order to escape the violence in Syria.

On Thursday, a series of creative short films and animations were screened in one of the drama classrooms and on Friday, staff brought in some home-baked goods for a bake sale that raised £85 for New Routes Integration. The school also held a non-uniform day toward the end of term, where further funds were raised.  In total the school raised £886 for the local charity who work with refugees and asylum-seekers in Norwich.

The week also saw most curriculum subjects delivering lessons around the theme of displacement with a focus on how to welcome and support refugees locally. For example, in English lessons younger students wrote poetry to advocate the integration of refugees into our local community and older students analysed the poetry of contemporary refugees from Sudan and Somalia. PE examined famous athletes, particularly footballers who are also refugees, to tie in with the World Cup and in Maths, students explored the practical budgeting and financial implications of being a refugee in Britain.

Jess Baker, an English teacher at the school who was also responsible for organising and promoting Refugee Week in school said “I feel incredibly proud of the sensitive and empathic work produced by students during Refugee Week. A common phrase produced in the children’s work was that here at Hellesdon “refugees are welcome”, which I believe is reflective of our students’ capacity for celebrating our differences”.

The school’s aim for the week was to create awareness amongst students about why people become refugees, in order to create a greater understanding and to overcome hostility. “We feel that we have succeeded in what we set out to do this week. Students have responded really well to the lessons and activities and have shown a keen interest in the cause. We want Hellesdon High to be a place where human kindness is instinctive and cultural diversity is celebrated.” says Roz Yassin, another key organiser of Refugee Week at the school.

The school’s Refugee Week activities are part of Hellesdon High School’s application to be recognised as a School of Sanctuary. To find out how your school could become a School of Sanctuary please see here.

Lecture on Basque refugees in East Anglia – 21/04/18

The Forgotten Kindertransport – Basque Refugees in East Anglia

A free lecture for Norfolk Welcomes by Mike Levy. Saturday,  21st April from 2-3pm. First Floor of Norwich Millennium Library

When the Spanish Civil War broke out a little over 80 years ago, many people fled their homes for safety, including nearly 4,000 children evacuated to England.

Some of these children, such as the Gallego brothers whose story our researchers explored for Norfolk Welcomes, made East Anglia their home.

Join us to learn more about their experiences.