Co-founder of Swansea City of Sanctuary and has been Chair of Trustees of the national City of Sanctuary charity since October 2011. He is a Quaker and a retired academic, having been Professor of International Development at the Centre for Development Studies, Swansea University and previously a co-founder of the Development Policy and Practice group and the Global Programme in Development Management at The Open University.
Chartered accountant aged 65 and mostly retired. Co-opted as national City of Sanctuary treasurer.
For 25 years up to 2013, finance director of group of private companies trading from 15+ locations in England. Role included responsibility for IT, HR, payroll, insurance, pensions etc.
Currently trustee and treasurer of asylum support charity in Southampton. He also volunteers for a local Citizen’s Advice Bureau and is involved in local community activities. Other interests include cricket and gardening.
"My name is Betty Nyamwenge, I am a refugee born in Uganda.
I came in this country seeking asylum and I have lived in wales for 12 years. Cardiff my home town. I am very friendly and caring, able to prioritise and complete tasks. I have gained very good communication skills during my experience of working as a volunteer in community groups within the church and outside with the community, working also in the beauty industry and from the volunteering at Oasis Cardiff. I enjoy helping to make a difference and team playing with different peoples and Organisations.
Working gives me pleasure and provides me with different experiences and challenges. I am able to follow instructions and can pick up new skills easily. I am interested in learning more while working. Always engaged in new courses to improve my skills and acquiring new ones. I am in several charitable activities from volunteering in the church as Community outreach representative, linking and working with the community, I have been volunteering with Oasis Cardiff for about 3 years it gave me pleasure to engage with the multicultural environment Oasis hosts. I was nominated Chair of Cardiff City of Sanctuary in summer 2015 after being involved in the sanctuary movement meeting at Westminster and in Birmingham. This experience has equipped me to be able to give speeches on several occasions in various places representing Cardiff City of Sanctuary.
I have passion in the works which aim to make the difference in people's lives which would involve working with other people who are like minded fighting for the same cause. I like having fun with the team, family and friends. I like meeting and working with people in new and different environments."
"Since 2003 I have been privileged to work broadly with refugees and sanctuary seekers in Bristol - as a volunteer with Refugee Action, as an ally and admin worker with newly formed Refugee Women of Bristol, and as a member of Bristol Defend Asylum Seekers Campaign. I began as the first paid coordinator (one day / week) for Bristol Refugee Rights in 2006, and retired as manager of BRR in 2014, which over 8 years has grown into a thriving organization, including the fundamental welcome service, language tuition, advocacy support, and a volunteering programme, coordinated by 12 part-time staff. The philosophy of BRR is contained in its key message “Safety - Solidarity – Action for Change” i.e., first create a place of welcome and safety, then develop solidarity, and then work together in practical ways to bring about change.
"Bristol became a City of Sanctuary in 2011. In Bristol we have focused on networking with the wide range of excellent local organisations and enabling the voice of sanctuary seekers to be heard in the city. We have many active campaigners including both sanctuary seekers and allies.
"I am convinced that the City of Sanctuary movement can help create a climate and platform in and from which to produce real change in public attitudes and policy responses towards refugees. As a trustee, I should be glad to support its work and continue to enable the direct voice of sanctuary seekers to be heard through the national City of Sanctuary network."
"Currently working for the Regional Refugee Forum as Project Manager working with Refugee Community Organisations across the North East Region. I am a member of all the 3 City of Sanctuary initiatives in Newcastle, Sunderland and Teesside. I have worked with Refugees and Sanctuary Seekers for about 10 years in the North East of England and participate in most of the key stakeholder platforms in that region. I would like to contribute my experience and knowledge for the continuous strengthening of the City of Sanctuary movement to build a culture of hospitality for people seeking sanctuary in the UK."
Jeff has worked with sanctuary seekers since 2006 when he trained with Freedom from Torture. Subsequently he helped develop counselling facilities & training programmes within several communities of AS&Rs in Manchester, Salford, London, Hull and Birmingham. He is also a tutor at REACHE, an educational project based in Salford Royal Hospital, specifically designed for sanctuary seekers who were doctors in their homelands and now wish to continue their profession in the UK. REACHE supports its members to pass UK medical examinations & to orientate their practice to the philosophy & regulation of the NHS, thereby gaining registration with the General Medical Council.
Jeff’s background is in Occupational Medicine and Mental Health. Before retirement he worked as “company doctor” to a wide variety of industrial, commercial & service organisations in the public, private and third sectors. These ranged from universities, the nuclear industry, social work teams & police forces in England to preserved steam railways in North Wales and the Church of South India. For 9 years he was also a psychiatrist in rural Gwynedd, establishing a therapeutic community in an attractive location where survivors of trauma could experience intensive counselling in a relaxed & supportive seaside setting.
He has been a member of several movements that aimed to change societal & legislative stance in the UK, Europe and the Indian subcontinent. These include the better management of stress & mental health in the workplace, the support of victims of crime & their families in the community & the law courts, the care of families in underdeveloped regions whose loved ones suffer dementia and, also, the development of humane organisations & institutions through specialist training of their HR personnel and senior management.
Jeff works on various subgroups to the Board, including Human Resources & the Distribution of funds from the Guardian Christmas Appeal. He plays an active role in developing ideas for the Health Stream & is currently part of the small specialist team putting together the CoS's Mental Health Resource Pack. He is closely involved with the activities & management of the Manchester group & offers support & guidance to new grassroots initiatives springing up throughout the North West. Jeff lives in North Wales &, from there, also hopes to offer a link between the work in Ireland & the UK board.
Jeni is passionate about community development and has developed her work with communities in the UK and Latin America over the past 25 years. Since 2008, that work has focused on the integration of refugees and asylum-seekers into UK life and encouraging the voices of those with direct first-hand experience of the asylum system to be heard in influential places. As a skilled mentor, project manager and convenor of networks, Jeni continues to support refugees and develop projects that encourage understanding between host communities and new arrivals while researching what makes a meaningful interaction that supports social cohesion through PhD research at the University of Sheffield. She convenes the Yorkshire and Humber Health Stream and is involved in a national refugee youth music initiative.
Prior to retirement in 2003: 40 years of higher education including Professor of Chemistry, Head of Department of Chemistry and member of Senate and Council of University of Southampton;
2004 -2006: 2 years work with Voluntary Service Overseas in Eritrea as a Professor of Chemistry
2006 -2013 voluntary work including trusteeship and Chair of Fundraising with the Southampton and Winchester Visitors Group (a group supporting destitute asylum seekers)
2007 – 2013 Trustee of Sarum Theological College, Salisbury
2008 – 2013 Chair of Management of the Avenue Multicultural Centre with responsibility for fundraising (the one stop drop-in centre for asylum seekers and refugees in Southampton)
1988 – 2013 Chair of the Trustees or a Trustee with responsibility for fundraising of the Avenue Centre, a Family Centre receiving highly vulnerable families by referral from the health and social service sectors.
2006 – 2009 Chair of the Local Management Committee supporting the placement of a Church Related Community Worker at Avenue St Andrew’s (ASA) United Reformed Church in Southampton and 2009 – 2013 Member of the national committee of the United Reformed Church responsible for Church Related Community Workers
2006 -2012 Chair of ASA/Medina Mosque Group exploring joint social outreach
Personal statement: "My wife, Janet and I moved to Ripon in August 2014 to be close to our children and grandchildren, who all live nearby. Having moved on from Southampton activities, I wish to support asylum seekers and refugees in the North. I have visited activities in Leeds, Middlesbrough and York and hope to support work, not greatly distant from Ripon. I believe there is a vacuum with respect to a national voice effectively opposing the positions adopted by Migration Watch and much of the media. I hope through working with the City of Sanctuary movement to learn whether our national voice should be best expressed in writing, in lobbying or by other tactics, possibly in collaboration with others. I will be happy to support City of Sanctuary in many ways including fundraising, searching to change the increasingly adverse national views of asylum seekers and refugees and to give local practical support."
Jonathan is a campaigner and teacher supporting charities and not-for-profits to campaign for change around the world – see http://jonathanelliscampaigns.com .
He has built a strong and successful track record of leading successful advocacy campaigns over the past 20 years. He led one of OXFAM GB’s global campaigns, has led successful UK campaigns on refugee and housing issues, and until recently led policy, research and advocacy for the British Red Cross.
He has extensive experience of supporting the development of advocacy campaigns across the world including: the Balkans, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Haiti, Nepal, Nigeria, Peru, Senegal, Somaliland, South Africa, Sudan, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand and across Europe. He was also a visiting lecturer at City University in London on the MA in political communication from 2012-2015
After coming to Britain in 2008 as an asylum seeker, Marzia learned and continues to improve her English, and she became a British citizen in June 2016. She has volunteered with the British Red Cross, HARP project and Oldham Unity Project helping destitute asylum seekers, as well as for UKEFF Project working with vulnerable residents of Oldham.
She has also campaigned on a wide range of issues with Debbie Abrahams M.P. and her team and have involved myself in a wide range of interpreting situations with various organisations in Oldham.
Prior to fleeing Afghanistan, where Marzia was a family court judge and targeted by the Taliban for her work on behalf of womens’ rights, she sat on the boards of ANCB, (Afghan NGOs Coordination Bureau), AWC, (Afghan Womens’ Council) and AWN, (Afghan Womens’ Network). She was also the chairperson for the Womens’ Committee of the ANCB from 2002 until escaping to the West.
She had already established the Afghan Womens’ Social Cultural Organisation in 1994. AWSCO's mission is to "contribute to the rehabilitation and development of Afghanistan through the planning, designing and undertaking of economic and humanitarian assistance programs, as well as by developing the skills and capacity of Afghan women." AWSCO has created numerous projects throughout central and northern Afghanistan as well as in Peshawar, Pakistan. The projects include handicraft/vocational training, education in computers and English, health awareness, emergency relief, human rights education, women development programs, housing construction, water supply, as well as women and social affairs projects.
Marzia actively encourages her fellow sanctuary seekers to make contact with local people and to focus their energies on learning English and interacting socially in the local community.
In my working life I was a museum curator in Local Authority museums – essentially a mid-level manager – and later a university lecturer and researcher. I therefore have management skills and am an experienced speaker and communicator. I am also a writer and editor – I am writing my thirteenth book (popular social history) this year.
I believe very strongly in the need to change the asylum system and to support those people unfortunate enough to have to go through it. I feel City of Sanctuary is increasingly well placed to do this and delight in the opportunity to be part of this development.
"Rodrigo is the Project Coordinator of City of Sanctuary Sheffield (COSS) and works in partnership with agencies across the Yorkshire and Humberside region. His role involves supporting, registration, liaising with medical Clinics, introductory briefing sessions to services and how to access them and signposting to other agencies.
"As a refugee, I have a long history of involvement with and working with refugees and asylum seekers both in Africa and in the UK. As a field coordinator with Sudan Human Right Association, I coordinated and implemented capacity building programmes and personnel training workshops for Sudanese refugees’ communities around the great lake region of Africa especially in DR Congo, Southern Sudan, Northern Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania and Somalia."
"I hold a Bachelor of Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management and also the Chartered Institute of Housing UK qualification. I am a trustee of (ASSIST) and Sheffield Health International Partnership (SHIP). I feel honoured to be co-opted as City of Sanctuary national trustee. I bring genuine qualities that arise from my personal experience as a refugee."
Through his various roles Roger has developed a passion for bringing people and groups together, as he believes the refugee sector could be much stronger and more effective through stronger and more open partnerships.
Roger is currently working as a manager with Northern Refugee Centre - RETAS Leeds. Since arriving here in the UK, he has worked in the public, private and voluntary sector running projects related to aspects of refugee integration.
He is a trustee for the national City of Sanctuary charity as well as being actively involved in the Leeds group and through his work and volunteering activities has developed a growing desire to see the huge potential of refugees and other migrants realised and recognised.
Sabir, a former refugee from Afghanistan, is the Centre Director of Coventry Refugee and Migrant Centre (CRMC), an organisation that once helped Sabir through his own settlement in Coventry. He is also chair of the Coventry Ethnic Minorities Action Partnership (CEMAP) and he previously managed the Migration Impact Fund locally. He also led ‘Sorted’ a major improving financial confidence programme at Coventry Citizens Advice Bureau. Sabir’s knowledge of the difficulties faced by refugees is strengthened by the practical experiences of going through the asylum system and by researching the subject of refugee integration through his MA studies at the Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations at Coventry University.