We are a group of volunteers who befriend and support adult asylum seekers and refugees in the Southampton area. Find out more about how we work, our partners and supporters.

 We do this by:

  • Befriending and offering one-to-one support to asylum seekers and refugees
  • Offering modest financial assistance to those who are homeless and/or destitute
  • Helping them to find and work with a solicitor to further their Asylum claims
  • Getting legal guidance for specific cases
  • Working with other Southampton refugee charities who run a weekly Drop-in Centre in the city
  • Reaching out to churches, schools and community groups who can help them
  • Campaigning for a fairer, more efficient asylum system in the UK.

  Some facts and figures:

  • We’re all about people – many of our volunteers are trained visitors / befrienders working directly with local asylum seekers and refugees
  • We’re economical – over 80% of the money we raise goes to our clients. Our funding comes from charitable trusts and our own fund-raising activities.http://swvg-refugees.org.uk/our-history/
  • We’re volunteer-led – we pay for just 25 hours per week administrative assistance, and everything else is done by volunteers
  • We’re practical – Our ASSIST scheme provides modest financial support (typically weekly payments for a basic room and subsistence) for a limited period to some 50 destitute asylum seekers a year. It accounts for around 75% of our annual expenditure. Our Legal Justice Project gives us access to specialist advice from a top immigration solicitor who also gives us regular training on changes in Immigration legislation
  • We spread the word – we provide speakers for local churches and other groups, and at a national level support campaigns on behalf of asylum seekers.

 In a nutshell, we believe that:

  • Every asylum seeker deserves respect and compassion
  • All asylum applications should be heard and dealt with promptly, fairly and fully
  • Being ‘in limbo’ between countries can be very distressing and isolating
  • Asylum seekers have a clear right to protection under the international laws Britain has signed up to
  • No UK asylum seeker should be forced into danger or destitution.

For full details, read our 2016 Executive Committee Report and Financial Statement

For a quick overview, read our Annual Review

 Pages in this section:

About us

How we work

Trustees and patrons

Our funders

Local partners

Our history

SWVG organised a day trip to the Isle of WightA day trip to the Isle of Wight