The migrant support and human rights organisation, Doras, are launching a new Community Sponsorship initiative in the Mid-West that will enable neighbours, friends or members of a local club or church community to come together to provide support for refugee families.
Doras will begin engaging with communities in counties Tipperary, Limerick and Clare in the coming months, with the aim of organising and assisting groups to welcome and support refugee families, mainly from Syria.
These families will be resettled from camps in countries such as Jordan and Lebanon as part of this exciting new venture.
“We are delighted to be a Regional Support Organisation (RSO) for new Community Sponsorship opportunities in Ireland’s Mid-West region, and can’t wait to engage with communities,” said John Lannon, Doras CEO.
“Doras completed five years of successful refugee resettlement programmes at the end of 2019, and we are looking forward to applying that experience to Community Sponsorship, by engaging and supporting local groups to welcome new families to their communities.”
Developed in Canada in the late 1970s, Community Sponsorship began in the east and south of Ireland in early 2018, with the first family resettled under the initiative moving to Meath later that year.
As part of the initiative, local groups work together to make the families’ move to Ireland as smooth as possible by sourcing accommodation, arranging local supports like doctors and language interpreters, introducing the family to the local community; and, most importantly, offering them a sense of belonging in their new home.
Ahmed Hassan Mohamed, Community Sponsorship Support Worker with Doras, will oversee the project.
“I look forward to meeting with interested groups in towns and villages across the Mid-West when it is safe to do so. And in the meantime I am available to discuss the rich benefits of Community Sponsorship for all parties, as well as talking through the steps to take to bring a refugee family in desperate need of security and stability to Ireland.
“I know that refugees are welcome here. We are already delighted to be engaging with a community in north Tipperary and look forward to meeting more groups soon.”