The pupils, staff and wider community of Bacon’s College in Rotherhithe chose to stand in solidarity and journey with refugees in prayer this Advent – and raise some much needed funds for JRS UK along the way!
Nick, JRS UK’s Community Outreach Officer, worked alongside Bacon’s College chaplain Rev. Nicky Teverson to plan a series of assemblies and activities to help the students reflect on the experiences of refugees and to hold them in prayer throughout the Advent Season.
The highlight of the appeal was the sponsored walk which saw 30 sixth form students make a four hour journey across London to raise funds for JRS UK. They were joined by Nick and Aidan from JRS, as well as two of our refugee friends who shared their experiences of seeking sanctuary here in the UK and how JRS accompanies them.
Starting at Southwark Cathedral, the group stopped at various locations of significance to the plight of refugees and migrants in London. Stops included the Kindertransport – The Arrival statue at Liverpool Street station, Brick Lane Jamme Masjid, which was once a Huguenot place of worship, and London Bridge. Each stop was an opportunity to hear about the experiences of the refugees accompanying the group.
One of our refugee friends explained how he had come to the UK to seek asylum 8 years ago and has been fighting to be recognised as a refugee since then. He shared the terrible impact being unable to work has on people in the asylum system and how many were desperate to use their skills and talents to contribute to society and support themselves. He explained that many refugees suffer with mental health problems. He also told the students how the work of JRS UK and other charities help refugees feel welcome.
Nick said: “It has been a great pleasure to work alongside Rev. Nicky, Mr Boyd and all the staff and students at Bacon’s College. The students have led the fundraising efforts brilliantly and have always been very engaged and interested in learning more about the experiences of our refugee friends. We are incredibly grateful for the impressive sum raised, the gifts donated and messages of support shared with our refugee friends.
“Thank you so much to all the students, staff and community who got involved and donated to the appeal.”
If you feel inspired by the efforts of the students at Bacon’s College, why not get in touch with the JRS team to discuss how you might be able to arrange your own fundraiser?