Dear Hosts, Home Visitors & Supporters,

MOVING ON AND UP

Since we achieved charitable status in March, it’s been all go. Referrals are increasing week by week, we are setting up even better support for hosts, and starting to think about other ways we can make a positive difference for our guests. We are growing up as an organization and with all the demands on the volunteers who run the charity and manage the day to day work, we now really need a permanent person who can help us make this transition.
We have been beavering away trying to raise the funds to employ a project manager- and the fantastic news is the Tudor Trust has made us a really substantial grant – enough for us to offer someone a job for three years.
In the grant letter, they said:
“The trustees were very impressed with the agility of the charity and how quickly you captured people’s attention and mobilized a tangible response to an issue you identified. They loved your use of tech and social media to manage operational needs and gain more interest and hosts for the work…. They think you have all done exceptionally well to have grown the service over the last couple of years in a difficult climate and where people’s attention is not always easily maintained.”
We are ever so chuffed and grateful to everyone who has done so much – hosts, home visitors, volunteers and supporters to generate this sort of assessment.

The other team news is that Areej – an inspiring Sudanese journalist, translator and yoga teacher, who was hosted with us and is still living with her original hosts – has signed up as a placement admin for the weekends. She will help George and Rachel on Fridays – you do know what a nightmare Fridays can be, I’m sure, as you may have had the experience of a call at 1700 as a last minute urgent referral comes in.

And weekends are so much better for catch-up and talking to hosts, so it seemed really sensible. Another grant from the Little Butterflies Foundation has helped fund that.
Please join us in welcoming Areej to the team- we’re very excited to have her join us.

New Board Members

We bang on all the time about how much we love and rely on our wonderful pro-bono lawyers, Travers Smith. Now we are delighted that the partner who has helped us the most and is already a critical part of our team, Daniel Gerring, has agreed to join our board. Daniel started to host earlier this year so now has the full R@H experience.
We are very pleased that Emma Doyle who is head of Data Policy for NHS England, is coming on board and will focus on the IT. We are all relieved, but Ruth, who has born the brunt of GDPR (more on that in a minute) is over the moon. Finally Tim Ramsey, who has considerable experience working with refugees and is the CEO of his own charity, Just Like Us, will join the board and help us with fund-raising and transitioning to the next stage.

GDPR

This dominated the spring and the lives of Ruth and Dan in IT- we are so grateful to them for keeping us compliant. They still need your help. Thanks to those who replied first time around. Please, please, if you have not emailed already to say it’s OK for us to hold information about you,
Or at least respond to the next email about it.
The thing is that, though we don’t ask much that is intrusive or protected, lots of people tell us stuff which is about their race, religion or sexuality.
Even if we didn’t ask, we then hold it. And we can’t without your consent.
We so need your help on this.

Home Visitors

We are looking at ways that our wonderful resource that is the Home Visitor network across the country can be deployed to help support our hosts even more.
We think we should prompt Home Visitors to give us regular updates on “their hosts”. Some do it already, just because they do. It seems to make hosts happier and more confident. And we need happy hosts as we want them to host again.
Do you think this is a good idea? If so, how often? Would it help (if you are a host) or be possible (if you are a HV) We would value any suggestions… to the usual address.

Handbooks

We are sending the Host and Home Visitor handbooks out with new placements and if anyone asks. They will be on the new website (due in September)
We now have the guest guidance too and in a number of languages: French, Arabic and Farsi already, with Oromo, Amharic and Tigrinya in the pipeline. Do please get in touch at info@refugeesathome.orgif you think your guest would find it useful. You can view and download the English version

Placements & data

We are now at nearly 80,000 individual hosted nights – that’s about 212 years of hosting.. which takes us more or less back to the battle of Trafalgar and the premiere of Beethoven’s Eroica symphony.
We have made over 1,100 placements and helped some 900 guests.
We are hoping to have an updated impact report in the autumn.
For now, all our thanks
Sara and the team