Support Organisations: Manchester
Signposting our refugee friends to support organisations
At HostNation, we don’t ask you to provide professional support. Instead, our scheme offers friendship and all its benefits; helping a refugee feel more at home in the city, having somebody to talk to and have fun with. You can also help your refugee friend with their English skills.
However, if your refugee friend needs more specialist or integration support, this signposting guide provides a range of Greater Manchester organisations that you could help to connect them with.
Refugee advice and support
Manchester Refugee Support Network (MRSN)
Help refugees and asylum seekers get support, immigration and general advice, food parcels and necessities for those suffering hardship. Range of asylum seeker and refugee advice services including immigration advice through their drop in centres - https://mrsn.org.uk/reopening-our-drop-in-centre/Football for adult refugees on Sundays. Elder refugee support to tackle loneliness.
Based mainly in Moss Side.
Give advice and guidance to those struggling to navigate the asylum system. Help those with refugee status to settle into their new homes and communities – everything from helping children into schools, to support on booking doctors appointments, and ensuring they get a hot meal when they arrive. They support people who suffer violent attacks or other hate crimes, to ensure they know their rights and get the help they need.
WAST: Women Aslum Seekers Together
Support women who are seeking asylum in the UK. Run a weekly drop in/ support group sharing information and connecting women with specialists such as domestic abuse agencies, local food banks, legal aid, immigration advice etc. across Great Manchester. Has an active campaign group, a food bank, a choir, a basic English Language class and more.
British Red Cross Refugee Support Services
Offer emergency help, one-to-one support and casework, special services for children and families, and help reuniting families. In Greater Manchester email GMRS@redcross.org.uk
Greater Together Manchester
Church of England organisation which helps in areas including homelessness, loneliness and isolation, mental health and wellbeing, and supporting displaced people. They have places of welcome across Greater Manchester, community led food projects, and training for grassroots community leaders. Good for those whose faith is important.
Refugee and asylum seeker support organisation which offers a wide range of services, including asylum support, emergency support, benefits advice, immigration advice, transition support to those granted refugee status, ESOL classes, wellbeing and employability support including IT courses, activities and volunteer opportunities.
Runs Drop in services in Beswick (Tues 11.30-4) and Salford (Weds 11-4).
Skills, training, employability support
Enables refugees (with the right to work) in London, Birmingham and Manchester to acquire the knowledge, confidence and experience they need to secure stable and fulfilling jobs. Usually through local authority referrals but they will also take on additional refugees who fit their criteria. Offers bespoke, intensive and flexible employment support to assist individuals to integrate in the UK and create fulfilling lives.
A place of welcome, support and opportunity for displaced people in Manchester and Salford. Provide community drop in sessions (Tues and Thurs from 9.30am) and support for refugees, asylum seekers and vulnerable migrants. Health and wellbeing support, skills and employment, family support including a ‘mama and baby’ group weekly. Based in Gorton.
The Mustard Tree is a charity providing food and face to face support to people who are on a very low income or homeless. They run The Freedom Project, a training opportunity where people can learn new skills, find work and overcome barriers, focus is on employability, gaining skills, suitable accommodation and addressing money worries. They run lots of courses, clubs and classes, including ESOL English classes, art classes, computer confidence and job clubs. They offer help with furniture, household items and food.
Based in Ancoats Manchester.
Refugees & Mentors
Supports refugees and vulnerable migrants to improve their employment prospects and get jobs. Offers a mentoring programme, courses and workshops including pre-employment training, English classes, job applications and CV help. Also runs the Rainbow Haven Work Club, employment related information, guidance and support for refugees, vulnerable migrants and asylum seekers. Based at Longsight Business Park, help people all over Greater Manchester.
Places to go for activities & well being
Many of the organisations mentioned above offer wellbeing and health activities.. Additionally :
Manchester City of Sanctuary
A non-religious organisation wanting to create a more inclusive welcoming city. MCofS provide opportunities for refugees and asylum seekers to connect with local Mancunians though activities. promoting positive mental health and wellbeing.
Growing Together Levenshulme
A therapeutic space and support network, otherwise known as ‘the garden’, is a set of allotment plots in South Manchester offering weekly therapeutic horticulture sessions to refugees and people seeking asylum. All of this community organisation’s participant-led activities are focused on improving mental wellbeing and physical health, as well as building confidence, skills and a sense of community.
Music in Action
Music and Singing with Torture Survivors
Every Thursday, Z Arts Hulme
Creative Writing Club Weds 12-1pm
Art Club Every Friday 12-1pm
Art Drop Friday 1-3pm
Warm Hut is a Refugee Support organisation supporting the African Community in Salford and Manchester. Their mission is that African people gain a better insight into living abroad, have a positive attitude towards life in the UK, maximise their well-being, and feel empowered and enabled to contribute to the host country. They have projects including ICT and English Conversation Club, The Gents (for men), Golden Age (for older people) and a Homework Club for children and young people. They are based in Salford.
Mental health support including advice and information on debt, housing and benefits to those with mental health needs. Mind also offers free wellbeing workshops, allotment gardening sessions and other support.
Rainbow Migration supports lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and intersex (LGBTQI+) people through the asylum and immigration system.
Provide practical and emotional support to improve self-esteem and confidence, reduce isolation, and help access health services and housing. They give specialist legal information and advice to LGBTQI+ people who are seeking asylum or making partnership applications to live in the UK with their partners. They have partnerships with several law firms to whom they can refer asylum seekers for quality legal representation.
Services and activities include: a range of support groups; face-to-face counselling; a helpline, email and pop-in service; a befriending scheme; a sexual health programme, a substance-misuse project; organisational training; a range of guides and resources; a national website; advice surgeries; LGBT infrastructure support; various research projects and policy campaigning. Based Chester Road, M15.
ESOL (English lessons)
ESOL English Classes
Some of the organisations above organise ESOL classes, including Revive, WAST (for women asylum seekers).
Caritas - Manchester Office, St. Aidan’s Centre
St Aidan’s Centre is in Wythenshaw, Northern Moor. They run a weekly ESOL class Tues 12-2 and Well Woman Group, for female refugees and asylum seekers to talk, cook together and learn English (Thurs 10-12).
Supports with refugee education, and community sponsorship of refugees (housing, funding and settlement support).
Mustard Tree : ESOL Beginners or Intermediate level Tues /Weds. On Zoom.
And English Conversation Club Weds 10-11am.
There is also a comprehensive list of English (ESOL) classes listed on the Manchester City of Sanctuary’s website here :
The Boaz Trust
Manchester based charity providing shared accommodation and 1-1 s support for people who have become homeless after claiming asylum.
Refugees at Home
Refugees at Home connects people with a spare room to refugees and asylum seekers in need of somewhere to stay. They recruit and support volunteer hosts who are willing to offer a temporary home and a helping hand. They match each guest and host, to assess and prepare them ready for hosting, to advise on hosting arrangements and accommodation, and to provide ongoing support to hosts throughout each stay. They are currently looking for hosts in Greater Manchester.
Hosting can be anything from a few nights to a few months. Please do contact them with any questions, or apply to host: email@example.com, https://refugeesathome.org/get-involved/id-like-to-host/