Norfolk gives generously to Afghan refugee fund
Thanks to the generosity of people across Norfolk and Waveney, the Bishop of Norwich’s Refugee Fund has received nearly £36,000 in the past fortnight, to help the arriving and expected new refugees from Afghanistan. The Diocese of Norwich is administering the fund at the request of Norfolk County Council.
The Council are co-ordinating the many provisions of practical support from the local community that have been offered.
Cllr Andrew Proctor, Leader of Norfolk County Council, said: “We’ve all been humbled by the response of our Norfolk residents to the events in Afghanistan. No one chooses to be a refugee and many Afghans have been forced to leave their homes with little to no personal belongings, let alone the means to find new homes in a foreign country. The work of all the people involved here in Norfolk, from the diocese and private landlords to the donations of clothing and furniture by individuals, shows the warm welcome we’re all ready to give those fleeing such harrowing circumstances, and I want to thank everyone for the kindness and compassion they’ve shown over recent weeks.”
Tim Sweeting, the new Diocesan Secretary of the Diocese of Norwich, said: "“I’m so pleased that our staff team is able to provide this secure way of giving via our website and to work with Norfolk County Council to ensure these funds will be used effectively for those who need them most. Many of our church communities are promoting the fund and are assisting in practical ways too.”
The Diocese of Norwich will also be making a recently-vacated clergy house in Norwich city centre available for an Afghan family to live in for the next two years. The property is close to schools, shops and a local mosque.
The Rt Revd Graham Usher, Bishop of Norwich said: “My prayer is that this house will soon become a home for a family to settle and thrive in. May they find the welcome that so many “strangers” down the centuries have found in the wonderful city of Norwich. It’s another way of living out the Gospel of Christ in loving our neighbour.”
You can continue to donate to the Bishop’s Refugee Fund at: dofn.org/refugee-fund
Picture © European Union/ECHO/Pierre Prakash.