Who we are and our history
The Federation was established as a registered charity in February 2000 in response to the increasing difficulties faced by Iraqi refugees and asylum seekers within the UK and is based in an office in Kings Cross, London. We provide essential support and assistance and promote dialogue and communication with service providers and statutory bodies. The Federation is a membership organisation and is run by a number of committed volunteers – including former doctors, students, teachers and human rights activists. Currently there is a network of about forty volunteers spread across various cities in Britain, with a range of skills and knowledge. The Federation also has one part time development worker supporting the charity. We encourage those we support to become involved as volunteers within our organisation so that they are able to support others. Our volunteers are at many levels; some have little experience but enjoy assisting with events and helping with our administration. Others have many years of experience working on community and human rights issues in Iraq and Kurdistan, bringing many skills to the organisation. We have an active Management Committee of Kurdish and Iraqi refugees, and we have contacts from our clients in all the cities in which we work. The Federation of Iraqi Refugees is a self help organisation aiming to provide essential support to Iraqi refugees and asylum seekers experiencing chronic difficulties The Federation of Iraqi Refugees is a leading community organisation offering support, advice and advocacy on behalf of Iraqi refugees and support for asylum seekers in the UK
The Federation Key aims are:
- Combat isolation amongst members of our community by organising social gatherings and celebrate special cultural events. These events take place approximately 4 -6 times in a year and are a useful way for members of our community to meet with others and to develop friendships.
- To relieve the financial hardship and distress of people from Iraq living in the UK by providing advice, information and support services to newly arrived refugees by telephone and face to face support. We spend considerable time with clients to ensure they are safe and understand what they must do.
- To help young people and women against threats from their families; working on issues relating to honour killings and crime which is a growing problem within the community. The work involves signposting to specialist women’s organisations (Kurdistan Refugee Women’s Organisation, Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation, Middle East Centre for Women’s Rights) and input at conferences and seminars on the issue.
- To support refugees who are fleeing from the current problems in Iraq. It is our intention to provide as much support as possible to these individuals by helping them source free legal advice and representation, signpost them to education and training facilities locally, and provide them where appropriate with volunteering placements and references.
- Keep our clients up to date information about the situation in Iraq and Kurdistan.