Dear Members and Supporters,
We are very pleased that Hannah Picking from the Refugee Council is now in post and will be managing the Syrian VPR scheme across 8 of the 9 districts participating. HWSF are looking forward to supporting her now that the families are beginning to arrive. Two more caseworkers are due to start shortly so there will be a team of three to cover Hertfordshire.
We met with Hannah and clarified what the Refugee Council will need and how HWSF can support their work. Key needs that are emerging are ESOL support (particularly while families await more formal programmes) and employment support.
HWSF is therefore running a one day course in 'Befriending with Language Support' for those wishing to work with families in this capacity. You do not have to be a language teacher or ESOL specialist, though you would be very welcome if you do already have relevant experience. We have 30 places available and would like to get a spread of people from across the county.
The course will take place on Saturday 30th April at the Vineyard Church, Brick Knoll Park, St Albans, AL1 5UG from 10.00 to 16.00. We are grateful to Vineyard Church for donating their premises for the day. There is plenty of parking available. We may ask for a contribution towards printing costs.
To reserve your place, please email Irene Austin on firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday 15th April. We will then send you more information about the course and will ask you to provide some information about yourselves to help us plan the day. Judy Kirsh will be delivering the course with support from Irene Austin.
The Refugee Council will be responsible for managing volunteers, including arranging DBS checks in all areas apart from Dacorum. If you have expressed an interest in volunteering to support Syrian families, or would like to do so, please could you complete their form found on our website. The HWSF volunteer forms have helped us build a picture of offers of support across the county, but you will now need to complete the Refugee Council's form. If you have any questions please email contact Catherine.
Please could you also let us know if you submit a volunteer application, saying where you're based, so we can keep track of volunteers and arrange meetings in different parts of the county. Many thanks.
The Refugee Council is looking for two volunteers to help at interviews for an admin and housing support officer, one for the morning and one for the afternoon. The interviews will take place on 22nd April in Stevenage. Please contact Hannah Picking on email@example.com if you can help.
The Refugee Council is also recruiting sessional Arabic interpreters. This is a paid job: they are looking for Hertfordshire-based people as they are currently dependent on interpreters having to travel from London. Please contact Hannah Picking on Hannah.firstname.lastname@example.org or 07342990032 if you can help.
We will be contacting you again soon with plans for local meetings and fundraising suggestions, but thought this was quite enough to put in our April email!
With grateful thanks for your continuing support,
The HWSF Committee