Christmas cards for Immigrants detained at Detention Centres in the UK The Friends of St. Eugene from Tower Hill
Christmas cards for Immigrants detained at Detention Centres in the UK
Christmas cards for Immigrants: the members of the Friends of St. Eugene group in Tower Hill have been raising awareness of the needs of people who are being detained indefinitely in detention Centres across UK.
In collaboration with the locally based Jesuit Refugee Service at Wapping, East London, they have encouraged their friends and family members to write personalised cards to people who are being kept in an isolating environment.
The Friends of Saint Eugene hope that the cards give a sense of friendship and the outside world to those whose lives are bleak during the Christmas season, thus living the Oblate spirituality through their daily lives.
Congratulations to all involved in this thoughtful initiative.
See photos below, thanks to the Friends members for sending them into us.
Are you interested in becoming a member of the Friends of Saint Eugene? See more information here:
Information from the Jesuit Refugee Service, London, on how to get involved in the Christmas Card Campaign:
Christmas and New Year can be a very difficult time for those accompanied by JRS UK in detention. The holiday period can remind people of a time of celebration with their families; a time which they have been removed from. We often see that the feelings of isolation and loneliness that many experience tend to increase around the Christmas time.
In order to alleviate some of these feelings, JRS UK will be sending Christmas cards to those we accompany in detention.
Beatrice Grasso, Detention Outreach Manager at JRS UK, said “Last year we received, and distributed, over 700 cards to our friends in detention thanks to the overwhelming response to our Christmas Card appeal. Christmas cards are often sent between family and friends and so receiving a card allows those in detention to remember that they are not alone in this situation; that they are part of a very large family who are thinking of them at this time.”
We would like to give Christmas cards to as many people in detention as possible and we would like you, our supporters, to help us write them.
Interested in writing a Christmas Card for those we accompany in detention?
Here are our Top Tips:
- Due to the ever-changing nature of detention we don’t know who will be there over the Christmas period. Use a friendly, generic initial address such as ‘Dear Friend’.
- Some of those we accompany will be victims of torture or trafficking, others will have fled conflict zones or their homes to seek asylum in the UK, and all will be going through a difficult time by being in detention itself. Your message should be one of solidarity and accompaniment for those who are going through this particularly difficult time.
- In detention we meet and accompany people of all faiths and none, so don’t assume your card will be received by a Catholic or Christian. We advise you not to include any overtly religious messages that could be alienating to someone depending on their faith or nationality.
- However, wishing someone a Merry Christmas or telling someone that you will remember them in your prayers is more than OK.
- Please leave the envelopes on your Christmas cards unsealed as they will need to go through security at the detention centre before being delivered.
Cards should be sent to the JRS UK offices and we will distribute them in detention in the week leading up to Christmas. Please include your name and address on a seperate note with the cards you send so that we can send you a thank you letter.
In order for us to distribute your card we will need to receive it by Friday 6th December.
Please send your cards to Beatrice Grasso, JRS UK, The Hurtado Jesuit Centre, 2 Chandler Street, London, E1W 2QT.
If you have any questions or would like some more information, then get in touch
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