We are brothers and sisters

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We are brothers and sisters

Jan 17th, 2022 | Advocacy | Comment

We are brothers and sisters. Nobody wants to be labelled, sorted and dehumanized by a passport, but that is what happens today to refugees and migrants at borders. Refugee Union stands for justice in migration, asylum and all forms of border crossing.

Did you know that passports were only required for travelling after World War Two? Prior to the 1950’s it was sufficient to buy the passage on a ship or plane to travel anywhere in the world. The United States only started to require passports in 1952.

In 2022 a passport offers either extreme freedom or extreme hardship.

What do you enjoy?

Fundraise to Support Refugee Union in 2022

Jan 11th, 2022 | Advocacy | Comment

We believe that together we stand stronger!

Refugee Union is the first self-organized group in Hong Kong where refugees help refugees. We registered as a society in 2014 to connect with Hong Kong residents and the community at large. We operate from a small centre in Sheung Wan where members and supporters meet and collaborate. It is an essential collective effort where your contribution makes a difference.

Refugee Union gathers over a thousand members from 20 countries, including 200 children. Our services are greatly limited by the donations we receive. We mainly support families as they are the most vulnerable and in need of greater assistance. 

The monthly government welfare is: $1500 for rent, $1200 for food, $300 for utilities and $200 for transport to official appointments. These amounts are unchanged since 2014. No support is provided for clothes, shoes, home fittings, cooking, cleaning, medicines and phones. Imagine, how do you cook without a stove and pots? How do you raise babies without diapers? How do you find shelter with $1500 monthly?

We plead for your financial support to make ends meet.

We pay $11,000 a month to rent our busy centre which is essential to receive and distribute donations. It is practically impossible to live without money in a city where everything has a price tag. We struggle below the poverty line and are banned from working under threat of 15 to 22 months in prison. We have designed four tables to explain how we spend the money we are lucky enough to receive. See: https://bit.ly/38FjT9x 

Through the Refugee Union we have the opportunity to directly reach out for assistance. We would be most grateful if you could contribute to this fundraiser so that we can strengthen our shared effort to support refugees. We are thankful that many of you have donated before as it shows that Hongkongers understand our predicament and are willing to help refugees. 

We are most grateful for your support!

You are warmly welcome to visit our centre and learn directly about the predicament in which we live. As refugees can’t open bank accounts, so we appointed the registered charity “Drink For Justice” to receive and disburse these funds to us in full. This platform collects no fees either.

Kindly share this crowdfunding page with your friends and on social media as it is the best way create awareness and support our community effort. We believe that together we are stronger!

Click to donate now: https://go.sparkraise.com/fundraise-to-support-refugee-union-in-2022

Merry Christmas!

Dec 25th, 2021 | Advocacy | Comment

Merry Christmas to all our wonderful supporters, donors and volunteers 🎄

You reached out and touched our hearts with your generosity ♥️

We are most grateful for everything you have done for the Refugee Union 🙏

Click the link to donate: https://bit.ly/3Fg63sT

Our Dream Christmas Present

Dec 21st, 2021 | Advocacy | Comment

It’s almost Christmas and our refugee families humbly ask for your HELP.
 
A little bit of cash is more important than gifts as we are not allowed to work and our wallets are empty 🌟
 
Please help us by supporting this crowdfunding program with a small donation which will put real Christmas cheer into our hearts. Every little bit helps 😊
 
To donate please click here: https://bit.ly/3Fg63sT
 
We will send you a special thank you e-card and “Drink For Justice” will issue a tax-deductible receipt.
 
Thank you so much for your support 🙏
 

Here are some ways we need to spend cash …

November Roundup

Dec 1st, 2021 | Advocacy | Comment

Refugee Union was founded in 2014 and is Hong Kong’s first refugee-led organisation.  To safeguard refugee rights, we work closely with our community partners to improve the status quo of asylum seekers and refugees.

Activities at a glance

This month has been a fruitful one with many meaningful activities happening in our centre, and we are thrilled to share with you some of them:

On 1/11, we were honoured to host representatives from the Sadhu Vaswani Mission and were grateful to know that they will arrange a series of donations for us soon.  Thank you very much for your generous support!

On 9/11, we were excited to have volunteers from Oneinchvertical organising outdoor sports activities for kids.  They were overjoyed and cannot wait for the next time.

On 10/11, our partner Grassroots Future continued the biweekly knitting class with ladies.  Many thanks to Jessica and fellow volunteers for the long support.

On 18/11, we had the great honour to host representatives from RUN Hong Kong in our centre.  We look forward to collaborating with them soon.

On 20/11, volunteers from CLSA Outreach visited our centre and taught children how to do hand drawn line art tattoos.  Thank you for having us in mind.

On 25/11, we were delighted to have Kayla and her friends from the German Swiss International School bringing a painting class for kids.  We all had great fun.

Thanks also go to teachers and students from the Chinese International School for delivering science and music classes for kids on 26/11 and 27/11.  We learned a lot with joy.

Giving is a blessing

This month we received donations of wide-ranging items, which include but are not limited to food, clothes, baby’s items, furniture, and other necessities.

We would like to take this opportunity to express our heartfelt gratitude to all Donors for lending us a helping hand.  Your support means a lot to us.  As always, we promise to deliver all donations we received to our members who are in need.

Please stay tuned to our official website and social media pages (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) for the updates.  You are also welcome to contact us by visiting our office or sending us an email at info@refugeeunion.org for any enquiry.

Thank you for supporting our initiatives and we look forward to hearing from you!

October Roundup

Nov 2nd, 2021 | Advocacy | Comment

Refugee Union was founded in 2014 and is Hong Kong’s first refugee-led community organisation. With the vision to safeguard refugee rights, since day one, we have been working closely with the community and co-organising diversified programmes to improve the status quo of asylum seekers and refugees stranded in the city.

Activities at a Glance

This month has been a fruitful one as there were many meaningful activities happening in our centre. We are thrilled to share with you some of those:

On 6/10, we were delighted to have Kayla from the Hong Kong Refugee Awareness, in collaboration with the Grassroots Future, organising an artwork class for kids. Kids have learned a lot with joy.

On 8/10, we were so touched that the Med Outreachers, composed of medical students from The University of Hong Kong (HKU) and The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), gave us a visit and delivered donations to our centre, despite the bad weather. Thank you very much!

Thanks also go to teachers and students from the Canadian International School of Hong Kong for reaching out and donating to us on 11/10, as well as the ESF West Island School for bringing us the very lovely and tasty student-baked cookies.

On 15/10, we were honoured to have Candice giving us a wonderful Cantonese class. We all have learned a lot. On the same day, a group of students from the ESF Chinese International School volunteered as homework helpers for kids. We were impressed by these students’ passion to serve.

On 19/10, Justin and his team from Oneinchvertical brought our kids a long-awaited outdoor sports class at Victoria Park. Kids were overjoyed!

On 25/10, we were honoured to host Ms. Kitty Chan from the British Council Hong Kong at our centre. We had a meaningful discussion. Thank you for having us in mind and we look forward to the future collaboration.

On 27/10, members from Grassroots Future organised another knitting class for ladies, having seen ladies’ interest. Thank you to all volunteers who devoted time and efforts to this.

Giving is a Blessing

This month we received donations of wide-ranging items, which include but are not limited to food, clothes, baby’s items, furniture, and other daily necessities.

We would like to take this opportunity to express our heartfelt gratitude to all donors for lending us a helping hand. Your support means a lot to us. As always, we promise to deliver all donations we received to our members who are in need.

Please stay tuned to our official website and social media pages (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) for the updates. You are also welcome to contact us by visiting our office or sending us an email at info@refugeeunion.org for any enquiry.

Thank you for supporting our initiatives and we look forward to hearing from you!

September Roundup

Sep 28th, 2021 | Advocacy | Comment

Refugee Union was founded in 2014 and is Hong Kong’s first refugee-led community organisation. With the vision to safeguard refugee rights, since day one, we have been working closely with the community and co-organising diversified programmes to improve the status quo of asylum seekers and refugees stranded in the city.

Activities at a Glance

This month we had a number of activities happening in our centre.

On 11/9, we were glad to have students and representatives from the Chinese International School, Delia Memorial School, and Fr. John Zhang’s Group visiting our centre. Later this month, we were also delighted to have students from The Chinese University of Hong Kong and King’s College giving us a visit. We can’t wait to work with you soon. Thank you for showing your care about refugee issues, it means a lot to us.

On 15/9 and 16/9, volunteers from Grassroots Future taught knitting and artwork classes in our centre for ladies and children respectively. We all enjoyed the classes. Meanwhile, we would like to thank all volunteers for spending time with us and their tireless efforts devoted to the programmes.

On 24/9, we were honoured to host Mr. Nick Rothwell, the Director of the Outreach Programme at Kellett School, at our centre. Thank you for sparing time with us and we look forward to the future collaboration.

Giving is a Blessing

This month we received donations of wide-ranging items, which include but are not limited to food, clothes, baby’s items, furniture, and other daily necessities.

We would like to take this opportunity to express our heartfelt gratitude to all donors for lending us a helping hand. Your support means a lot to us. As always, we promise to deliver all donations we received to our members who are in need.

Please stay tuned to our official website and social media pages (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) for the updates. You are also welcome to contact us by visiting our office or sending us an email at info@refugeeunion.org for any enquiry.

Thank you for supporting our initiatives and we look forward to hearing from you.

Crowdfunding for “Refugees Helping Refugees”

Sep 12th, 2021 | Advocacy | Comment

The Refugee Union is the only organization where refugees help refugees. We registered as a society in 2014 to connect the asylum community with supporting residents and operate from a centre in Sheung Wan where members and supporters meet and collaborate. We believe that together we stand strong!

Refugee Union is made of a thousand members from 30 countries, including 200 children. Our services are greatly limited by the donations we receive. We mainly support families as they are the most vulnerable and in need of greater assistance. 

The monthly welfare for a refugee is: $1500 for rent, $1200 for food, $300 for utilities and $200 for transport to government appointments. No support is given for clothes, shoes, home fitting, cooking, cleaning, medicines and phones. Imagine, how do you cook food without a stove and pots? How do you help crying babies without diapers? How do you find longterm shelter with $1500 monthly? Refugees live below the poverty line and we cannot work under threat of 15 to 22 months in prison. 

We plead for your cash donations to make ends meet. It is practically impossible to live without money in a city where everything has a price tag. We have designed four tables to explain how we spend the money we are lucky enough to receive. See https://bit.ly/38FjT9x 

Through the Refugee Union we have the opportunity to reach out directly to you for assistance. We would be most grateful if you could contribute to this fundraiser so that we can support more refugees and show that many Hongkongers understand our predicament and are willing to assist.

You are warmly welcome to visit our centre and learn more about the predicament in which we live. As refugees can’t open bank accounts, we appointed the registered charity “Drink For Justice” to receive and disburse these funds to us in full. This platform collects no fees either.

Please share this crowdfunding page with your friends and on social media as it is the best way to spread the word and raise awareness. We believe that together we are stronger!

For these reasons we humbly appeal for your financial help!

https://go.sparkraise.com/fundraise-for-refugees-helping-refugees

August Roundup

Sep 8th, 2021 | Advocacy | Comment

Refugee Union was founded in 2014 and is Hong Kong’s first refugee-led community organisation. With the vision to safeguard refugee rights, since day one, we have been working closely with the community and co-organising diversified programmes to improve the status quo of asylum seekers and refugees stranded in the city.

We Have Moved

22 July is the day! After 12 unforgettable years in Sai Ying Pun, where we shared both great and challenging times, this month we were thrilled to announce that we have successfully moved to our new (smaller but cosier) centre in Sheung Wan.

You are most welcome to give a visit during our office hours: Monday to Friday between 10 a.m and 6 p.m.

Activities at a Glance

Things are going as usual. This month we had a number of activities happening in our new centre.

On 16 August, we were glad to have volunteers from Grassroots Future teaching the regular crochet class at our centre. Ladies were in love with their DIY products.

On 19 August, volunteers from Miles 6 gave us a special visit. We were thankful to have Rwan and Jason for offering kids math tutorial class and storybook club.

On 24 August, RUN Hong Kong invited us to visit their office and discussed ways to improve refugees’ assistance. Thank you for reaching out to us and we look forward to the future collaboration.

On the same day, we were thrilled to have Dr Bridget Liu from HKU, together with Grassroots Future and Dignity Kitchen, giving us an art therapy class and helping refugee mothers and children alleviate their stress. We all enjoyed the class.

Giving is a Blessing

This month we received donations of wide-ranging items, which include but are not limited to food, clothes, baby’s items, furniture, and other daily necessities.

We would like to take this opportunity to express our heartfelt gratitude to all donors for lending us a helping hand. Your support means a lot to us. As always, we promise to deliver all donations we received to our members who are in need.

Please stay tuned to our official website and social media pages (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) for the updates. You are also welcome to contact us by visiting our office or sending us an email at info@refugeeunion.org for any enquiry.

Thank you for supporting our initiatives and we look forward to hearing from you!

Who are the Refugee Union children?

Aug 24th, 2021 | Advocacy | Comment

We are often asked this question and wish to share some information with our readers:
 
– The majority of children at the Refugee Union were born in Hong Kong as refugees.
– There are 200+ children of all ages among our active members, including 50+ babies.
– Their parents come from many countries in South East Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
– Many mothers are ex-FDH and 99% of fathers are refugees as these two social groups co-mingle.
– All children under the age of 14 were born in Hong Kong and have never left the city.
– Some of the older children were born overseas and sought asylum here with their family.
– Children cannot apply for residence as they inherit a parent’s immigration status and nationality.
– Their nationality is indicated on Immigration papers but very few actually hold a passport
– All children attend school from kindergarten to high school with support from the Education Bureau.
– Children receive food coupons and rent allowance (half of adult) from the SWD contractor.
– Like their parents, refugee kids do not receive clothes, shoes, bedding, school supplies, etc. from the government.
– Babies do not receive diapers from the government, so mothers depend heavily on donations.
– Children attendance at the centre depends on transportation money, programs and expected donations.
– We parents are very happy and thankful to collect donations for our kids at the Refugee Union!
 
We would be grateful for a small donation to our fund for basic needs.
 
Thank you in advance 🙏
 
https://go.sparkraise.com/fundraise-basic-needs-refugee-union