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Published: Thursday, 17th June 2021

The Royal Borough of Greenwich is proud to welcome and stand up for the rights of refugees, asylum seekers and migrants.

And for this year's Refugee Week, we're encouraging residents to learn more about refugee stories, perspectives and the creative work of people who have had to flee their homes and start again.  

Refugee Week is an annual festival celebrating the amazing contributions of refugees, and the theme for 2021 is ‘We Cannot Walk Alone’

There are many ways you can get involved and celebrate by visiting the Refugee Week website. Royal Greenwich’s own National Maritime Museum is also running a series of activities and events this week including a creative workshop with artists BLKBRD Collective, and an online tour of migration objects in their collection. 

The Royal Borough of Greenwich has a proud history of supporting those fleeing war and persecution, who want to make our borough their home. We currently support 19 Syrian families through our Greenwich Sanctuary Project Resettlement programme and are proud to help refugees living in the borough through funding to the Plumsted Community Law Centre and Lewisham Refugee and Migrant Network. 

In December 2020, the Royal Borough of Greenwich passed a motion to start the process to become a ‘Borough of Sanctuary’ with the organisation City of Sanctuary, because we believe that everyone deserves a safe place to live.   

Danny Thorpe, Leader of the Council, said, “Refugees, asylum seekers and migrants are very much welcome here in Royal Greenwich. This week, we celebrate the wonderful contributions that refugees and migrants have made to our borough and beyond, especially the huge role they have played during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a critical time to stand up for the rights of refugees and migrants across the UK, and Royal Greenwich is proud to support Refugee Week again this year." 

If you are a refugee, asylum seeker, or migrant living in Royal Greenwich and need support, the council has services to help you with:  

The NRPF Team provides statutory services to Royal Greenwich migrant residents who are experiencing destitution. For more information, or to make a referral, please call the Contact and Assessment Team on 0208 921 2304 or email AOPS.Contact.Officers@royalgreenwich.gov.uk and cc Nilrecourse@royalgreenwich.gov.uk 

We also are proud to fund the vital work of local organisations who support refugees and migrants:  

  • Plumstead Community Law Centre receives funding from the Royal Borough of Greenwich and provides free support and advice on immigration, housing, employment & more to migrants, refugees and asylum seekers along with Greenwich residents. 
  • Lewisham Refugee and Migrant Network, a local organisation which receives funding from the Royal Borough of Greenwich. LRMN provides free support and advice on immigration, housing, employment & more to migrants, refugees and asylum seekers.  
  • Greenwich Inclusion Project, an independent local community organization that focuses on promoting race, religious equality, community inclusion freedom from hate crime, guidance and/or workshops. To find out more contact contact marc.lorenzi@griproject.org.uk at GrIP Tel: 020 3747 9864  
  • Live Well Greenwich is an organisation which offers health and wellbeing support for local residents. 
  • The Royal Greenwich Community Hub has been supporting people since the beginning of the pandemic, with thousands of volunteers who provide advice and help on a range of topics from food, money issues and housing, to employment, training and social activities.