A ‘Community of Sanctuary’
caring, shelter and sanctuary for all who live in our place
We have joined the nationwide movement ‘City of Sanctuary’, which seeks to build a strong network across the land to nurture a narrative of kindness, support and hospitality towards those seeking refuge and towards all our fellow citizens.
Hastings Supports Refugees has been sending help to thousands of people seeking refuge in France and Greece since 2015, and is both impetus for and foundation of our becoming a City of Sanctuary, standing behind our ongoing schemes to expand awareness, and support where it is needed, both at home in our town and abroad. You can like the Hastings Supports Refugees Facebook Group to keep up to date with events and activities across Hastings Community of Sanctuary.
We are building upon existing initiatives, including The Links project which has for many years been helping refugees and those applying for asylum in our town, and developing new ones. Since Summer 2017, Hastings & Rother Refugee and Asylum Seekers’ Buddy Project has been set up, welcoming into the community Syrian families arriving through the Syrian Resettlement Programme, and has become already a thriving and multifaceted source of strong, practical and communal support for those families. From Autumn 2017 until Summer 2018, we ran Hastings Debates, a series of public talks about ways in which we can understand people’s need for refuge, and the policies being enacted, with international speakers including war correspondents, authors, artists, film makers. We are maintaining a constant presence in our local media with comment and reportage on many topics around the issues involved and on what we are doing on the ground to tackle these; this includes keeping active contact with our Parliamentary representative. In Refugee Week in June we hold our ‘Festival by the Lake’, attended in 2018 and 2019 by around 1000 people and a day of celebration of our town as a welcoming place for those seeking sanctuary with us. You can keep up to date with the event on the dedicated Facebook Event Page.
For all refugees who arrive here we are committed to making ours a place where they may thrive and build relationships with the local communities.
We welcome expressions of support and interest in contributing to this work.
You can join us here.
Community of Sanctuary in the Local News!
Below is a selection of links to external media sources which have published articles about Hastings Community of Sanctuary. This…
PechaKucha Evening at the De La Warr Pavilion
PechaKucha Evening at the De La Warr Pavilion, co-curated with the Hastings Refugee Buddy Project, Tuesday 18th June 2019
Meeting with Shadow Home Secretary, October 2019
Hastings Buddy Project and Hastings City of Sanctuary were pleased to be invited to meet with Ms Diane Abbott, Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary, recently in Hastings. Rossana Leal, founder and director of the Hastings Buddy Project chaired the meeting, and about 15 of us sat round the table, including some…
City of Sanctuary Regional South East Gathering October 26th 2019
South-East Gathering 2019
Hastings Protests Against Turkish Violence in Syria – October 2019
By Alex Kempton – Communications and Media Lead for Hastings Community of Sanctuary
Joint statement on the arrival of sanctuary seekers in Hastings – October 2019
Hastings Community of Sanctuary, The Hastings & Rother Refugee Buddy Project and Hastings Supports Refugees were relieved to hear that…
Official Launch of OPEN – June 2019
By Alex Kempton – Media and Communications Lead for Hastings Community of Sanctuary
Fatima Elaysi’s Speech from the launch of OPEN – June 2019
As part of our role to amplify the voices of those seeking sanctuary in Hastings, we are publishing the…
Schools of Sanctuary starting in Hastings – June 2019
Dr Felicity Laurence – Chair of Hastings Community of Sanctuary