About us

We are a group of volunteers who befriend and support adult asylum seekers and refugees in the Southampton area. 

We support 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
  • Giving one-to-one English teaching for asylum seekers
  • Helping people to find and work with a solicitor to further their asylum claims
  • Providing activities for asylum seekers
  • Getting legal guidance for specific cases
  • Working with other Southampton refugee charities to 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.

  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 – around three-quarters of the funds we raise are used to provide resources for asylum seekers and refugees. Our funding comes from charitable trusts and our own fundraising activities.
  • We’re volunteer-led – we pay for just 26 hours per week administrative assistance, and everything else is done by volunteers.
  • We’re practical – Our ASSIST scheme provides modest financial support for a limited period to some destitute asylum seekers in Southampton. This can be around 50% of our annual expenditure. We have relationships with immigration solicitors as well as many local organisations so we can help people get the help they need.
  • We spread the word – we provide speakers for local churches and other groups, and at a national level we support campaigns on behalf of asylum seekers.

 Our values

We believe that the current UK asylum system is inhumane, and that:
  • people seeking asylum have a clear right to protection under the international laws that the UK has signed up to;
  • all asylum applications should be heard and dealt with promptly, fairly and fully;
  • no one seeking asylum in the UK should be forced into danger or destitution; and
  • everyone seeking asylum deserves respect and compassion.

 More about SWVG

For a quick overview, read our booklet or a recent newsletter.

The Charity Commission pages on SWVG include our Annual Reports and Financial Statements (accounts). We have two sets of pages: the current pages are for charity number 1183558 for everything since  Jan 2020. The others are for our old charity number 1103093 till December 2019.

Click here to find out how you can help or get involved.

Click here for the referral form to refer someone to us for help

Click here to see our quarterly newsletter to supporters

 Key documents

  1. SWVG Constitution.  In 2019, SWVG was approved as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation, registered with the Charity Commission number 1183558. The constitution was slightly amended at the AGM on 16 November 2020 to clarify who is eligible for membership.
  2. Complaints (2022) We hope that you don’t need to make a complaint about SWVG, but if you do, click here to find out how.
  3. Equality and Diversity (2022)

Pages in this section:

About us

How we work

Trustees and patrons

Our funders

Local partners

Our history

A day out at Bouldershack