About Action For Refugees

Action for Refugees is a network of local community groups who are committed to supporting refugees and asylum seekers.

We are not-for-profit charitable organisations working with local individuals, groups and schools to help refugees. We deliver a range of community fundraising events, and promote awareness, befriending, support and solidarity for refugees and asylum seekers living in Birmingham and the Black Country and those seeking safe passage across Europe.


Procession of Light  In partnership with We Are Bearwood and Smethwick Craftivistas, this is an annual torch-lit procession through the local Warley Woods, gathering the local community in solidarity with refugees.
Together in Solidarity  In January 2017, we held a joint event Together in Solidarity at mac Birmingham . An evening of instrumental music and poetry, people were invited to leave their own message of peace and hope on our peace tree.
The Big Sew  A community sewing project that makes much needed items for refugees entering Europe. We have made over 400 toiletries bags which were filled and sent to Kos to support individuals and families in transit. We have made baby hats, bibs and soft toys for the wonderful charity Carry the Future. And have hosted various Make & Take events locally to raise money for ASN. We also make reusable sanitary products for local refugee women.
Schools We have worked with local primary and secondary schools (including Queensbridge and Kings Heath Primary School) to deliver projects that raise awareness and explore the complex issues of migration.

We have compiled a collection of handy resources for both primary and secondary schools keen to explore refugee issues with their students. If you are a school interested in working with us or accessing these resources please contact us.

Library of Sanctuary BAFR worked with City of Sanctuary on establishing a brand new stream of sanctuary. Thimblemill Library became the UK’s first Library of Sanctuary at the beginning of March 2016 and we continue to work with City of Sanctuary on the promotion of this to other libraries both regionally and nationally.

With mac Birmingham and Art Works Hall Green, we co-commissioned the Birmingham Artivists Smethwick Craftivistas to create We Are Not Of This Place, which engaged people across the city through creative sessions, creating a visual and sound installation presented at the mac.

Exhibitions We hosted exhibition, ANON, by acclaimed photographers, Paul Hill and Maria Falcon at Thimblemill Library in summer 2017 that finished on the final day of Refugee Week. The photographers spent a few months volunteering in Greece last year, and the photographs document the everyday reality for many refugees in transit.


Community Lunches These monthly family friendly events, in partnership with The Real Junk Food Project Birmingham, bring newly arrived families together with the local Bearwood community to cook and eat together. We work with a number of different creative practitioners to provide children’s activities and with local hostels, churches and organisations supporting asylum seekers and refugees to publicise these events.
From One Mother To Another We host a Facebook group where newly arrived parents can connect with parents living locally in Sandwell. Any items families need can be requested or items no longer wanted can be offered.
Community Friends We are currently building a diverse network of local activities that newly arrived people might want help accessing to help make people feel welcome, have fun and make friends.
Welcome Walks a monthly community lunch and walk to support newly arrived families and individuals in the South Birmingham area. Supported by Stirchley Library, Loaf, The Real Junk Food Project Birmingham and Change Kitchen, the purpose of the project is to offer a friendly welcoming, walking in free local spaces, parks and community gardens and working alongside creative practitioners to provide a range of activities.


We work with local organisations and agencies to deliver training to local communities and volunteers including: Asylum Issues, Befriending, Mentoring Skills, How to have difficult conversations.