Our stories

The Islington Centre for Refugees and Migrants currently supports around 180 asylum seekers, refugees, and migrants each year. Our clients are among the most disadvantaged, isolated and vulnerable people in London. Having fled persecution, human rights abuses, they are at risk of destitution, detention, and removal to the situation they fled.  We want to share some of our clients’ stories: how they came to the Centre, how our work helped them, and what attending means to them:

Tomas, a human rights defender, explains how being a member of the Centre helps him to keep his spirits up in the midst of a complicated fight for the right to stay in the UK; Jo, who fled persecution, talks about how the Centre has helped him to become part of the community; and Mary, who faces death if returned to her home country, talks about how the Centre helped her to overcome homelessness and begin to explore new skills and interests.

Learn about how we have supported Lola, a torture survivor, to rebuild her life in the UK; how we are helping John to learn new skills while he waits for the outcome of his asylum claim; and how the Centre supports Robert to pursue his dreams.

Even in the midst of deprivation, isolation, and emotional distress, our clients ensure that our Centre is a welcoming space, where everyone can support each to taking meaningful steps to rebuilding their shattered lives, and here we will share some of our clients’ successes

A significant proportion of our asylum seeker clients have no recourse to public funds, and are destitute and homeless, reliant solely on the community for support. Even those able to claim asylum support must get by on £36 per week. The psychological toll of waiting for a decision on an asylum claim can be overwhelming, and a negative decision, devastating. Lack of access to opportunities to learn English severely hamper integration and contribute to isolation and mental distress. You can find out more about the problems they face here.

“The centre is our family, our bridge and connection to the community”

We are very proud of every member of our diverse and supportive community. We are proud of their commitment to overcoming their problems, and their desire to become active members of wider society.