Refugee Response Working Group​

The Portsmouth Diocesan Refugee Response Working Group was established by Bishop Philip in 2015.

The purpose of the group is to formulate and implement a response to refugees, with the initial remit being a response to the 20,000 Syrian refugees who are or will be arriving to the UK directly from refugee camps.

The group aims to inspire, educate, provide models, connect interested people, support the development of projects and disseminate information. The group intends create “formula” projects which could easily be implemented by volunteers at parish, pastoral area, district or community level as well as possibly a larger project.

The group has currently created two packs of resources. The education pack can be used to inspire, inform and educate. Individual parts can be used separately, perhaps for general distribution in the parish, discussion groups or small project groups. The project management pack, gives guidance on how to start a project from the very start.

Download the education pack

Download the project management pack

The group consists of keen, passionate, knowledgeable, multi-skilled members who are representatives of groups across the diocese, people with the skills to enable the development and support of projects and people who are planning, developing or delivering projects. The current composition of the group includes:

  • priests and other representatives from Portsmouth Diocese
  • representative from St. Vincent de Paul society
  • representative from Justice and Peace groups
  • a Middle Eastern specialist
  • people who have worked and/ or volunteered for the Citizens Advice Bureau, a county council, social services, education policy, youth justice and communications  
  • a management consultant
  • a person developing a local project.

If your parish or local area is planning or doing something towards helping and supporting refugees, please let us know. Please also contact us if you have skills which you would be willing to offer the new arrivals – such as teaching English as a foreign language, psychology, relevant language skills (Arabic, Kurdish, French or other regional languages), willingness to drive, practical skills like carpentry or anything which you think could help. You can contact the working group via or 01730 262 290.



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