Host a meal to show that we want Hospitality not Hostility for people seeking asylum this Refugee Week.
This June, faith groups across the UK are coming together to show that we want to be communities of hospitality for people seeking sanctuary. As the government’s Illegal Migration Bill proposes a ban on claiming asylum in the UK, could you host a meal or tea during Refugee Week to stand in solidarity with refugees and asylum seekers?
What: Host a meal or tea in your community, for community members, asylum seekers, refugees, politicians and other faith groups.
When: During Refugee Week, 19th -25th June 2023. Friday or Saturday will be best if you’re planning to invite your MP. Can’t make this week? Don’t worry, you can pick another day – the most important thing is that you are able to gather together to show hospitality.
Why: The Illegal Migration Bill essentially creates a ban on refugees in the UK. We want to show that faith groups believe people seeking sanctuary should be welcome in the UK. We’ve partnered with Together With Refugees to raise a voice across the country that communities want #HospitalityNotHostility.
Here are five steps to get you started:
1. Find a venue – church, park, home
Whether you use a church building, your home or even your local park, find a venue that is comfortable, accessible and welcoming to all.
2. Get cooking (or baking and buying!)
The table is a place for you to connect, and a key part of this is sharing food and drinks. Why not invite your guests to bring a dish or drink from their culture to share? Whether you provide a three course meal or a cup of tea, it’s time to make room around the table.
3. Invite everyone (including your MP)
Share the event with your local community or run the event alongside those from other faith groups. Connect with local refugees or others with experience of the asylum system in the UK so that you can hear directly from them and to demonstrate that they are welcome around your table.
You could invite local organisations, schools or well-known figures in your community.
Make sure to invite your MP, MSP or AM and other local politicians – this is a great way of demonstrating your community’s support for refugees.
4. Display orange hearts
Orange hearts are a symbol of welcome and support for refugees – make sure to incorporate them in the decorations at your event, or even in the food!
5. Share your event with others
Make sure that you’re sharing the message of Hospitality not Hostility far and wide. Could you invite a local paper to report on your event? Or share with your followers on social media? These events are an opportunity to spread the message of hope and welcome far and wide.
Why not get started by downloading the toolkit from Together With Refugees?