Penrith And Eden Refugee Network

Penrith and Eden Refugee Network

English Classes for Asylum Seekers

Since Spring 2022, Cumbria has housed a small number of asylum seekers.
People who arrive in the UK from Ukraine, or from Syria or Afghanistan on the resettlement programme, are provided with formal English classes that are recognised by government as essential to making a new life here. However, asylum seekers are excluded from all statutory provision of education until they have been in the UK for 6 months. In response to this situation, we set up English language classes for the Carlisle-based asylum seekers. These are volunteer-led and take place twice a week.
Asylum seekers in the hotel are on destitute support and are not permitted to work. As well as learning, the English classes provide a place to be welcome, which enhances well-being. We are also helping to develop activities asylum seekers can be involved in such as volleyball, which are run by other organisations. In addition, volunteers help with practical and administrative problems faced by asylum seekers.