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Our Awareness raising group works in schools to raise awareness of the global refugee crisis and the factors driving families and individuals’ need to seek safety. Who are refugees?  Where do they go? Over the last year we have had a strong focus too on developing young people’s understanding of the Syrian refugees coming to live in UK , and in Exeter.

Last year (2017) we held very successful workshops at Alphington and St. Sidwell’s primary schools, and also with 3 yr. 6 classes at Ladysmith Federation. We have shared information, readings, poetry, videos in groups with the children and encouraged them to think about what families being settled here need to help them feel welcome and a sense of belonging. This year we have a very full programme for assemblies and workshops at 10 Exeter schools. Please contact us by email if you’d like to discuss or arrange a workshop ([email protected] )

The assembly and session was sensitively handled and caused much thought provoking discussion, both within the workshop and throughout the rest of the week.” Mr Jenkins (Class Teacher, St. Thomas Primary)

making a personal 'hand of welcome'

Photo: Making a personal ‘Hand of Welcome’                                                                                                  “The sessions helped me to really                   appreciate the strife  and troubles that others are needlessly forced to experience   and just how lucky I am. All it can take is a small contribution, even just a smile, to change that person’s life and welcome them into a society that most are privileged to live in.”                                                          Schoolchild,  Woodwater Academy

     The children have also made ‘hands of  welcome’ for our ‘Welcome Tree’ which has been displayed at St. Sidwells Community Centre,  The Civic Centre, Exeter City Council and as part of the ‘I Welcome ‘ exhibition at St. Petrock’s Church during this year’s Refugee Week.  Some of the refugee families settling in Exeter have also viewed  it and had a chance to see the messages.

Tree of Welcome at Exeter City Council’s offices-Civic Centre, Paris St. Exeter.


How  Schools Can help? Resources, Sanctuary Stream and Sanctuary Award

Learn More:  A selection of recommended books for children and young people that include stories about asylum seekers and refugees from around the world:  Download here:  A_selection_of_books_about_asylum



Books Suitable for Key stages One and Two readers (and older)

  • My Name is Parvana (2)by Deborah Ellis
  • Parvana’s Journey (1) by Deborah Ellis
  • Night Flight by Michaela Morgan
  • Mud City (3) by Deborah Ellis
  • Paddington Here and Now by Michael Bond
  • Shadow by Michael Morpurgo
  • The Unforgotten Coat by Frank Cottrell Boyce
  • Under the skin by Catherine McPhail

     For Further info. and Resources :    Please check out the City of Sanctuary UK website for news about the Schools of Sanctuary stream of work nationally and about the Schools of Sanctuary Award. (

Child Refugees Welcome? How schools can help.