In an article on the Guardian website recently, Spencer Woodcock, who runs a project supporting older people to live independently, extolled the refugees who volunteer on his project.
Spencer’s volunteers have come from countries including Eritrea, Rwanda, Angola and Pakistan.
Not only do these volunteers keep a much-needed service running as they visit lonely and isolated elderly people and take them out on trips, they are building new relationships and helping to dispel the tabloid myths about benefit-grabbing asylum seekers.
In these days of public spending cuts, charities and other organisations are increasingly relying on a willing army of volunteers.
Spencer writes, ‘Witnessing those tabloid-reviled asylum seekers and supposedly selfish economic migrants giving up their own time to help out more vulnerable members of our community really has changed attitudes.’
Are you a refugee who volunteers? Or do you work with refugee volunteers? Share your experiences with us.