Over the past year the media has been full of stories of migrant communities being torn apart both in this country and abroad. But this Christmas we want to tell you a story about a community of migrants and supporters that has come together, just behind Stockwell tube station...
The London Welcome Project is a space open every sunday which is welcoming and provides food and friendship to visitors each week. We aim to challenge the injustice and discrimination that many of our visitors face by providing a place of welcome in London. We seek to empower our visitors, offering them the opportunity to socialise and break the isolation they so often face. Our space is open to anyone and everyone.
We run a variety of activities to help people build connections in their new home and break down the barriers all too often put up against migrants.
With the help of our skilled volunteers, visitors to our project can have their bikes repaired. We have a full selection of tools and the bike workshop is open to the whole community.
Hot Nutritious Meal and Drinks
Many of the members of LWP come to have a hot meal and to socialise – or to share their traditional food and cook for everyone. A meal is cooked by one of our volunteers or members, and we have hot drinks on offer throughout the session.
English Conversation Classes
Our volunteers are always keen to chat, and each week there are opportunities for informal English conversation practice. We can also give one-to-one help with specific learning, such as writing a formal letter or putting together a CV.
We have a variety of board games and activities, a library, and computers with internet access. We offer a range of ad hoc workshops, including sharing skills in photography, art and IT. We are also able to assist visitors with presenting their CVs and making job applications – and any other practical things we have knowledge of!
We urgently need funding this Christmas to keep our centre open for those who need it most. We all know how important it is at this time of year to have a warm welcoming place open to all so we'd be extremely grateful for your support. The funding environment is becoming increasingly challenging for projects like ours. We are entirely volunteer run with few overheads so you can be sure that whatever you give will go directly to those who need it most.
- With only £5 you can buy us a puncture repair kit
- A gift of £8 will get us some books for our library
- For just £12.50 you can give an hour of English conversation classes or fun activities for children
- With £20 you can provide a meal for 30 people
- A generous donation of £35 will keep our bike workshop up and running for a whole Sunday, for anyone who needs a tyre change or new parts
- A very generous donation of £65 would cover a whole session, for up to 40 visitors
For those of you who supported us last year, here's what we've been up to since then!
This year we have introduced a monthly meeting open to all and a mailing list to try amplify everyone’s voices within the LWP. We have made huge progress with our application to be a registered charitable incorporated organisation; we now have Trustees and hope to make a full transition to CIO in March.
We have increased the number of activities available this year, including knitting, juggling, art therapy, an orchestra, puppetry, printing, baking, English language help and careers advice. Volunteers have assisted members with successful applications to University, job applications and have addressed housing concerns.
We have served 40 meals every Sunday every week inspired from all over the world: Jamaica, Yemen, Italy, Egypt, UK, Thailand, India, Spain and China. We now collect food from local stores with Fairshares, cutting down on food waste and enabling us to feed even more people. We have given away donations of clothes, shoes, bedding and toys.
We have seen a greater number of local people visiting the centre, encouraging a dialogue between those from different backgrounds. Many many games of dobble and cheat have been played, these game can get very heated!
This year in many ways has been about transition for us, we have seen our community ebb and flow, we have eaten daal together and broken plates together, we have clarified our structure, and friendships have got closer. We have a lot of plans and ideas for next year, we just need your support in the interim to help us keep going.
Thank you, from all of us, for your support.