Following Croydon's #WeStandTogether Campaign of 2017, CVA pledged to find a way to help refugees and those from new communities to feel more integrated into the mainstream life.
CVA successfully applied to the London Together Fund, part of the Mayor’s Sport Unites strategy in partnership with Comic Relief to deliver a new project that uses sport as a tool to improve social integration between refugees and the mainstream sports sector in Croydon.
We are working with over 40 community organisations who are supporting refugees and are interested in the impact that sport and physical activity can have on an individuals' mental and physical wellbeing.
We have created a team of volunteer Activators, who are refugees themselves, and passionate about using sport to engage people and improve their lives. CVA is providing training and support to set up informal activities for their peers.
We welcome any refugees age 18+ who would like to be part of our project. If that is not you, there are still ways to get involved too. Please get in touch by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We Stand Together forms part of the Mayor’s social integration strategy. Click the videos below to see some of the incredible people we work with.
Telephone Befriending PLUS
Arriving in a new country can be a lonely experience, especially whilst trying to navigate a pandemic and possibly not speaking much or any of the native language. And as we know, feeling isolated has a huge impact on our wellbeing, which is why our Befriending PLUS service is so vital.
Our amazing team of volunteers, who speak a wide range of languages between them, are matched with someone needing a friendly voice on the other end of the phone. They chat once a week, at times convenient to both, with conversations lasting anywhere from 15 minutes to 1 hour.
Below is a testimonial from Laura V, one of those amazing volunteers, sharing her experience so far:
Croydon Refugee and New Communities Forum
Croydon Refugee and New Communities Forum (CRNCF) is an independent, local and collaborative initiative, supported by CVA, aimed at promoting migrant justice, voices and integration in Croydon. The Forum comprises over 40 refugee organisations who meet together to discuss issues that impact the lives of refugees and try to find positive solutions.
This year, a listening exercise was conducted and brought together in a report, which aimed to provide an overview of services and activities in Croydon and capture the voices of migrants. The report also aimed to help construct objectives for the Forum's work toward becoming a Borough of Sanctuary and inform our strategy moving forward.
Read the report here: Final_Report.pdf