LASSN’s projects have closed to new referrals from 19th March 2020, in response to corona virus. We will reopen to new referrals as soon as we are able.
We continue to support existing clients and volunteer matches by phone, email and and encourage all the people we support to remain in contact throughout this difficult period.
Up to date information on what’s happening with other projects and services can be found on http://migrationpartnership.org.uk
We offer the following advice to volunteers
“I’m currently matched…”
We are recommending that volunteers stop home visits for the time being. Please do keep in contact with the person you are matched with, and let us know how you are both getting on.
Here are some ways that you can keep in touch with the person you are matched with:
– Video calls (eg skype, whatsapp or similar)
– Phone calls
– Audio messages (these might be easier for the person you are matched with because they can pause and rewind messages until they understand them)
– Text messages
– Post (please don’t give your home address to the person you are matched with, but you can send things like learning materials in the post)
– Going for a walk together (you’d need to avoid travelling by public transport and make sure that you were 2 metres apart, and in the open air)
We’re postponing in-person reviews until the situation changes and we’ll be in touch by phone with anyone who is due for a review.
“The person I support can’t afford to keep their phone topped up…”
LASSN would like to offer all volunteers and clients £5 each, per month – towards the costs of staying in touch by phone, video or whatever.
We are trialling this for a couple of months to see how it goes (and to work out how if we can afford it in the medium-long term).But communication is so important, it feels like the right thing to do.
if you are struggling to know how to top someone’s phone up, please google it, or call us for help.
To claim this money back, please keep receipts/bills and other evidence of spend and submit with an expenses form.
Please don’t give out a fiver and then ask for the money back, because we need some kind of audit trail. Even a photo of a makeshift hand written receipt is better than nothing.
“I’m worried about the person I’m matched with…”
If you are worried about your learner, please get in touch with us. We’re reachable by email and phone as normal (lassn.org.uk/contact).
If there is an emergency, please contact the emergency services.
“This whole volunteering thing is stressing me out…”
It’s a really difficult time right now, and all of us are experiencing a lot of uncertainty. If you are feeling like it’s getting on top of you, please get in touch with us.
It’s much better to talk to someone and to be kind to yourself than to soldier on quietly.
And although we may not have all the answers, we can be alongside you, and help you to work out if volunteering is the right thing for you right now.
Please keep aware of the news and the official advice
In addition to the GOV.UK and NHS the Leeds Migration Partnership remains a useful source of information that’s relevant for asylum seekers and refugees and those working with them.
For example, Coronavirus public health information in 21 languages produced by Doctors of the World and conformation that testing and treatment of COVID19 will be free, regardless of immigration status.