The CRSS has a comprehensive Safeguarding Policy which operates under the strict safeguarding requirements of the Clifton Diocese.
If you have any safeguarding concerns whatsoever regarding CRSS activities or people involved in any way with the CRSS, no matter how small, please contact as soon as possible the Clifton Diocesan Safeguarding Office on 0117 9540993 (email@example.com).
The CRSS Safeguarding Lead is Roger Bird (PSR.firstname.lastname@example.org; 07790 626717). The deputy Safeguarding Lead is Paul Williams (Chair.email@example.com; 07849 203457).
The links below will lead you to the official Home Office/Caritas guide to implementing the Community Sponsorship Scheme (scroll down to the download at the bottom of the page) and also to the government website and documents relating to the scheme so that (if you wish) you can have a more comprehensive idea of what is involved:
Of particular interest, too, is the CHARIS website:
CHARIS was formed by three churches in Taunton Deane, and now has considerable experience in housing refugees from the Middle East. We have received great support and advice from CHARIS' Lisa Westlake and Gordon East.
Anyone involved with the CSS also works closely with Reset UK. See their website at:
Important work is being done in bringing communities together by the organisation Bridges for Communities, set up to 'create opportunities for people from different cultures and faiths to meet and build friendships'. Bridges for Communities is based in Bristol and has particular experience working with refugees from the Middle East. Please do look at their website and the wonderful things they are involved in:
An absolutely amazing recent book on the experience of the refugee is by Dina Nayeri, The Ungrateful Refugee (Canongate Books, 2019). Nayeri is an acclaimed novelist and herself a refugee from Iran:
If your timed is limited y ou can also find a Guardian article Nayeri wrote several years before publishing this book, in which she outlines her story and her 'argument' at:
If you want a very readable introduction to the situation in Syria during the last twenty years or so, written by an English woman fluent in Arabic who has lived in Syria and knows it well, please do read My House in Damascus: An inside view of the Syrian crisis, by Diana Darke (Haus Publishing, 2016). A fantastic book, very highly recommended.
If you read no other books on the current situation, please at least read Nayeri and Darke.
For an inspiring, if harrowing, insight into the plight of Syrian refugees from the perspective of one family, see Tima Kurdi (the aunt of little Alan Kurdi, pictured above), The Boy on the Beach: My family's escape from Syria and Our Hope for a New Home (Toronto: Simon and Schuster Canada, 2018). Highly recommended!
Please do meditate on the photographs of Syrian refugees all taken in just the one year of 2015 at:
Look into the faces of these people, human beings exactly like us - our brothers and sisters, our own children. Use them to inspire a determination both to help the current refugees and also to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again.
Finally, there is the most marvellous, readable, little book by Jordan Denari Duffner, Finding Jesus Among Muslims: How loving Islam makes me a better Catholic:
The author is a young US Catholic (still a PhD student) who speaks Arabic, is extremely knowledgeable about Islam, and works in the USA for Muslim-Christian understanding. The book will be of interest not just to Catholics and is full of touching and inspiring stories of her experience with Muslims and also corrects many common misunderstandings about Islam.
More links will be added as and when they are appropriate and useful.