We aim to ensure that all Sanctuary Ambassadors feel empowered and supported in the activities they conduct for City of Sanctuary and their wider development as leaders within the refugee sector and movement of welcome. We do this by offering various forms of support:
- We regularly arrange training sessions for Sanctuary Ambassadors and those within the CoS network to enable them to get involved with various CoS activities and speak with the media. You can find details of the latest opportunities on our Events page, with recordings and notes from past training sessions on our Training page.
- We also advertise other training and learning opportunities outside CoS that we feel may be of interest or use to Sanctuary Ambassadors. Whilst some of these ongoing opportunities are outlined on the Training page, we also directly contact registered Sanctuary Ambassadors with suggestions based on their individual interests.
- We regularly organise and hold Sanctuary in Politics Courses – intensive one-off courses for Sanctuary Ambassadors based in specific regions to develop the skills, knowledge and confidence to further their development as leaders in the refugee sector. For further information of the Sanctuary in Politics Course and to see details of upcoming courses, look at the Sanctuary in Politics Course page. For those who join the Sanctuary in Politics Couse, there is a mentoring scheme which helps participants with their assignment as well as general wellbeing.
2. Networking and Socialising
- Our regular Funday Friday Zoom call which is open to anyone seeking sanctuary and others and provides a safe space to unwind. It includes a range of fun creative activities and other opportunities for friendship and is usually led by Sanctuary Ambassadors.
- We manage a Sanctuary Ambassador WhatsApp group which on invitation you can join, post messages and receive message (please note your number will be visible to other users). Here we share the latest updates of opportunities for Sanctuary Ambassadors to get involved with both inside the CoS network and across the wider movement.
- We hold regular events for Sanctuary Ambassadors, please see the upcoming events calendar for more information.
3. Covering Costs
- We expect that Sanctuary Ambassadors’ involvement with CoS comes at no cost to themselves. We therefore offer to cover expenses that may arise as a result of volunteering, for example mobile data for internet use as well as travel and other expenses (when travel is permitted).
4. Mental Health Support
- We are conscious that many Sanctuary Ambassadors are still experiencing various challenges and we intend for their involvement in CoS to not exacerbate this. Sanctuary Ambassadors are never obliged to take part in any activity for CoS – we encourage them to say no if they do not feel comfortable or do not have the time or interest in different activities. Please see the Protect Yourself page for further information.
- We also offer all Sanctuary Ambassadors confidential mental health support through the generous offer of one of CoS UK’s trustees, who has a background in counselling. If a Sanctuary Ambassador is feeling stressed or anxious we can connect them with the trustee to arrange a friendly chat and offer emotional support. If you feel like you could benefit from this please contact Megan.
5. Support with professional development and opportunities
- We regularly share details of job and volunteering opportunities that may be of interest to Sanctuary Ambassadors through the City of Sanctuary monthly newsletter and the Sanctuary Ambassador regular email updates (you receive this once your register as a Sanctuary Ambassador).
- We can also offer letters of recommendation or references for job opportunities, once we get to know you. We will need at least a weeks notice for this.
This link takes you to a section of our website aimed at providing information for people seeking sanctuary and includes, Immigration Legal Advice, Asylum Support and Housing issues, Health, Employment, Bank accounts, etc. Please tell us what you think and what else you would like to see on these pages.