Letter: Sanctuary launch - Providing a warm welcome

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I would like to bring to your readers’ attention that on Thursday, February 16 the Harrogate District of Sanctuary was launched.

This grassroots movement, endorsed by Harrogate Borough Council, aims to provide a safe, welcoming and inclusive environment for refugees and asylum seekers.

The group was started late autumn 2016 following the increasing refugee crisis and a growing awareness of the need to show solidarity together with a great desire among people of the district to do something to help.

The launch on Thursday evening included several brief talks, a quiz, a video and an interview with a Syrian refugee. There followed round the table discussions of the issues facing refugees and asylum seekers to generate ideas for how to progress.

Through your pages I would like to thank all those who attended and who signed up to join us, also to say thank you for the generous donations.

We will be arranging further events in the coming months. We would like to encourage people to come forward to help us raise awareness and create a positive environment of a culture of hospitality towards this vulnerable group.

We welcome people from all faiths and none and from all sectors of the community and we would be happy to come and speak to any group.

More information about the City of Sanctuary movement can be found at www.cityofsanctuary.org and a search under ‘groups’ would lead to Harrogate District of Sanctuary.

To contact the group, please email info@harrogatedistrict.cityofsanctuary.org.

Jenny Travena

Chairman, Harrogate District

of Sanctuary