Manchester City of Sanctuary

Manchester City of Sanctuary

At a glance


  • Refugees / migrants

Other details

Geographical remit: 


Our mission in Manchester is to help spread the City of Sanctuary network to Manchester making it united in being a welcoming city, open and fair for all. After all, we are a city built my migrants. We want to create a more inclusive, friendly and welcoming city to those seeking sanctuary that bring skills, enterprise, music, food and hard work to enrich our city. 

  1. To advance the education of the public about issues relating to refugees and people seeking asylum or sanctuary.
  2. To promote health and well-being in Manchester among sanctuary seekers.
  3. To provide or assist in the provision of facilities for recreation or other leisure time occupations in the interests of social welfare to improve the conditions of life of people in need.
  4. To provide training to those people who have need of it for their benefit including refugees, people seeking sanctuary, and people refused asylum in the UK.
  5. The promotion of equality and diversity by promoting activities to create understanding and engagement between people from diverse backgrounds



Whilst our monthly conversation clubs and community meals are our flag ship activities, we are also engaged in a wide variety of other things. It is really important to us to try and offer strong welcome to our members and, whilst safe social spaces are really important, pragmatic material help is also really a vital part of offering welcome. Over the past 12 months we have:

  • Written support letters for 12 individuals cases (including standing as surety for bail in court on occasion)
  • Run a shopping buddy scheme (asylum seekers are forced to live in a cashless, card system which means they cannot but bus tickets, or save up for coats or shoes. We link up locals and asylum seekers to shop together so sanctuary seekers can get cash for the food they buy for locals.)
  • Run cycling schemes where sanctuary seekers get free bikes, safety equipment and training.
  • Run English Classes (often crowdfunded by the teachers themselves)
  • Run theatre trips to HomeMcr and Z-arts
  • Signpost volunteers and members to RAPAR, REVIVE, Boaz and other Sanctuary seeking organisations dependent on their needs
  • Run writing workshops to train Sanctuary Seekers to write blog posts and poetry
  • Facilitated Drama productions with Royal Exchange Theatre
  • Been involved in the Manchester Day Parade
  • Taken a day trip to Lyme Park
  • Held a ‘twixmas’ party
  • Hosted the writing, design and printing of our ‘everything you need to know’ booklet, written by sanctuary seekers for sanctuary seekers. It promotes understanding and effective signposting.
  • Had our 3rd School of Sanctuary awarded a certificate.
  • Worked with maternity services at Salford University to create a maternity stream in Manchester.
  • Started working with GP surgeries to create ‘surgeries of sanctuary’ in Manchester.
  • Run supporter training sessions to bolster our social media presence and support in events
  • Partnered with Ultimate Spirit to do ultimate Frisbee sessions and tournaments
  • Partnered with POPUK to make a CD by sanctuary seekers about sanctuary seekers
  • Partnered with NCS (the National Citizenship Service) to provide sporting and photography activities
  • Partnered with Manchester City Football Club, who gave free tickets to some of our members.
  • Helped many individuals with personal issues such as: providing bedding, partnering with Big Change Manchester to buy shoes and individuals items


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