L. H.: ‘I arrived in the UK in 2020 to join my husband. Your organisation has already helped us so much in such a short time. Your advice is invaluable, you helped us find medical support for my youngest who has cancer, and you interpreted our discussions with the nurses, helped us do the medical appointment bookings, with the Job Centre. You helped my husband find a job. I could not be more grateful to Maryam and the AWL team. I have hope, thank you!’
M. arrived in the UK in 2019 and at first encountered many problems. He was initially homeless and lived with a friend for a few months and did not speak much English.
M did not understand the benefits or Universal Credit system and needed help with the online systems. He also needed to learn English, find a job, and secure stable housing so he could bring his family over from Syria, whom he was constantly worried about. M’s only goal was to find a way to bring his family to safety.
M worked in construction back home in Syria, he is a skilled builder and labourer. But he needed language skills, and support on how to use the Job Centre, UC online system, and other resources to get settled and on his feet. A friend referred him to Action West London’s refugee project, Working West London, for support.
AWL offered him advice and moral support. M. soon found work, and we showed him how to use the UC online system and Job Centre, helped him search for private housing, registered him for English classes, and filled out the paperwork to help him access benefits, healthcare, and other essential needs and services. AWL also introduced him to a solicitor for immigration advice on bringing his family over, and one year later, the children and his wife, L., arrived safely in the U.K.
Tragically, soon after they arrived, their youngest child was diagnosed with cancer. Since then, we have constantly supported them with the medical appointments by offering interpreter services, have registered the children with schools, and have assisted the family in obtaining available benefits for L. and the children. L. now stays at home and takes care of their youngest child, going with her to all the hospital appointments. M. continues to work and study English. Their daughter is fighting for her life, and her condition is now stable. Even under such circumstances, the has remained extremely kind, polite and grateful, and is trying to give back to the local community.