Registered Charity No. 1142919
Phone: 0121 788 1087 or 0798 551 1062 Email: info@entraideuk.org.uk

About Us

WHO WE ARE?

Entraide is a well established charity which works alongside asylum seekers, refugees, migrant workers and their dependants in the UK  in order to facilitate their integration into society.

We are currently the only organisation in Solihull providing support specifically to asylum seekers, refugees and migrant workers.

The need to set up this group emerged from a small scale research carried out between December 2008 and April 2009 by our chair on the integration of Congolese refugees living in the West Midlands (Kupay, Felix, 2009, Transition, Agency and Integration: The Experiences of Congolese Refugees in the West Midlands; Dissertation submitted for the degree of MA Social Policy in the Institute of Applied Social Studies, University of Birmingham).

This research found that Congolese asylum seekers and refugees who came to the West Midlands in general and to the North of Solihull in particular faced several difficulties at each stage of their exile experience and various barriers and constraints to their integration into society. The major constraints and barriers identified included: the lack of fluency in English which prevented them from easily interacting with other people, accessing basic services or finding jobs; the unfamiliarity with the UK welfare, healthcare, education systems and the lack of support and information that could facilitate integration into society.
Some asylum seekers and refugees interviewed during the study explained how for example they were unable to access health services during the first few months of their arrival in the UK because GP practices were not providing interpreters. Many refugees told us that they were struggling to fill benefits, housing or job application forms or did not know who to turn to if they needed advice.

Most asylum seekers and refugees interviewed had very little knowledge of or access to mainstream support and advice organisations and agencies such as the Citizens Advice Bureau, Law Centres, Social Services, Jobcentres and in some cases, even of the Refugee Council which was frequently perceived as being part of the Home Office. Our research also found that most of these organisations frequently failed to meet the needs of asylum seekers, refugees and migrant workers.

Our group was set up to fill this gap in provision.

OUR VISION, MISSION & VALUES

Our Vision

A world where asylum seekers and refugees are safe, respected and live free from persecution and where people in Africa live life to its fullness, free from poverty.

Our Mission

ENTRAIDE will work to empower asylum seekers and refugees in the West Midlands to rebuild their lives and fully integrate into society. We will also work to empower marginalised communities in Africa enabling them to lead fulfilled lives.

Our values

Justice

We will advocate on behalf of our clients to ensure they receive the best possible support in order to achieve a satisfactory outcome. We will ensure our beneficiaries are given accurate information based on our knowledge, experience and research.

Community

We will actively involve our beneficiaries in the delivery of our service in a meaningful way. We will strive to help our beneficiaries successfully integrate into our local community.

Commitment

We will follow through on issues experienced by our beneficiaries until they are resolved. As a staff team we will keep learning and developing ourselves in order to continually improve our service.

Support

We will support people in crisis situations who have nowhere else to turn. We will invest in our staff and volunteers so that they are best placed to help support others

Empowerment

We will help people to re-learn their identity and build their confidence to enable them to fulfil their true potential. We will work with people where they are at, recognizing and embracing the challenges this can present.

WHAT WE DO


IN THE UK

Entraide enables refugees, asylum seekers and migrant workers in Solihull and the surrounding to access education, health services and social provision by providing advice, advocacy and one-to-one support.

We network with local agencies which best enhance the life of asylum seekers, refugees and migrant workers.  

We provide the following services/ activities for refugees, asylum seekers and migrant workers and their dependants:

  • General information and advice on welfare benefits, housing, debt, education, training and employment, immigration (signposting only);
  •  One-to-one support with applying for welfare benefits and social housing(filling forms or phoning benefits agencies), dealing with creditors, etc.
  • Peer-mentoring and one-to-one support to newly-arrived asylum seekers or settled refugees in need of support.
  • Signposting and if necessary accompanying refugees and asylum seekers to places such as GPs, Refugees and Legal Centres, Citizens Advice Bureaux, Solicitors, Jobcentres, Housing Offices, etc.
  • Translation and interpretation services;
  • Home visits and befriending asylum seekers, refugees and other migrants;
  •  Employment Support Service (Skills for Jobs and Refugee Volunteering Programme), ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages)  and IT Training;
  •  Social, cultural and recreational events (including trips) for families and children;
  • Homework clubs and health promotion activities (HIV, Sickle cell, drug, and alcohol awareness), etc

 

Since our inception we have helped hundreds asylum seekers, refugees and migrant workers to access primary healthcare, apply for benefit, find suitable accommodation, find employment or training, etc.

 


IN AFRICA

We implement development projects that empower poor communities in Africa and improve the quality of their lives. 

We do this by working in partnership with local organisations based in Africa and operating in the field of education, health, water and sanitation, livelihoods, environment, HIV, rural and urban poverty, informal sector, street children, anti corruption and good governance, etc. 

We also carry out research, feasibility studies and evaluation of development projects on behalf on bilateral and multilateral donors, NGOs, governments and individuals.