20 June, 2024 - By Leyla Williams

Finding home on World Refugee Day

This World Refugee Day, our community members are talking about what ‘home’ means to them.

Omar, from Syria, volunteers with us each week as an Arabic translator. “If I feel lost, I find myself walking to the West London Welcome centre. It’s like home for me.”


 

Rita, from Nigeria, volunteers with us making coffee for our community. Earlier this year we supported her and her young children into a stable home after they received refugee status.

“A home is where you have all you need. We’ve found comfort, love and a home here.”


 

“West London Welcome is my first and forever home.” We’ve known our friend Ali Ghaderi since 2019, when we supported him with his asylum case and housing. Now he’s an inspirational campaigner and the founder and director of the Babylon Migrants Project, supporting refugee, asylum-seeking and migrant young people across London.

Chirin, from Syria, was one of our very first community members back in 2018 and still comes to our centre to hang out with friends and neighbours each week and continue developing her English language skills.

“When you move to a new country, you need to feel you are not alone.”


 

“This is Uriel, he’s a year and five months old now. This is his best place. This is home.”

Evelyn and Uriel are an asylum-seeking family who have transformed over the past few months since they started coming here to escape isolated housing. They’re very loved at our centre.


 

We worked closely with Zahra, from Iran, to find accommodation after she faced homelessness immediately after receiving refugee status. She volunteers as a cook and is regarded as ‘queen of rice’ at our centre (a competitive crown).

“I feel like I have found family here.”


 

“We are struggling with our mental health… we stop thinking so much when we’re here. West London Welcome stops us missing our homes so much. This is our second home.”

Felicia, from South Africa, is a starring member of our new stand-up comedy group.