Council prepares to support Afghan refugees

12:46pm - 24 August 2021
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North Somerset Council is making preparations to support refugees fleeing Afghanistan and will welcome refugee families and help them to resettle locally. 

It's not yet known what number of families will be looking for support locally, but North Somerset will work closely with the Home Office to ensure that they are welcomed and able to rebuild their lives safely.

Cllr Mike Bell, Deputy Leader of the Council and executive member for housing said: "We've been proud to support refugees over many years, both as part of the Syrian resettlement programme and beyond. Our hearts go out to the Afghan people and all those living through such difficult times in Afghanistan.

"We stand ready to help in the resettlement of refugees and those who have worked with the British military in Afghanistan and who are seeking safety in the UK."

The council is now working to understand the details of the Government's resettlement scheme and establish what accommodation and support might be available locally. 

Leader of the Council, Cllr Don Davies added: "We will support our Afghan friends to the best of our ability and are grateful to the many people who have already been in touch with us to offer help. At the moment the most pressing need is to find suitable accommodation. In time we will also need to support our resettled families with schooling, skills development and securing employment."

The council has already received a number of offers from the community keen to offer support. These offers include short and long term accommodation as well as clothing and other practical items. If anyone would like to offer accommodation they should contact mark.francis@n-somerset.gov.uk for more information. At this stage the council is not accepting other items and will make announcements in due course about any furniture, clothing or other household items needed by the families settling locally.