Coventry Law Centre

Young migrant rights

“Being undocumented has significant practical, social and economic impacts and permeates the everyday lives and decisions of young people.”

 

No Right to Dream - Paul Hamlyn Foundation

Young migrant rights - the project

The Young Migrants Project is a partnership between Coventry Law Centre and Grapevine working with young people across Coventry who have irregular immigration status. This is an innovative partnership between a legal advice provider, Coventry Law Centre and Grapevine whose skill and experience is working with people in order to assist them in making their own decisions and building networks of support around them.

Young Migrants Rights is funded as part of the Supported Options Initiative established by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and Unbound Philanthropy. This was an initiative they jointly developed following research on young undocumented migrants – which culminated in a report published in 2009 called ‘No Right to Dream’.

Project aims

The project aims to provide young people who currently do not have regularised immigration status specialist legal advice in order to assist them in making applications to the Home Office to regularise their status and to connect them into services and communities.

Regularising their immigration status will not be enough, however. Difficulties are magnified when young people have no supportive networks. Using Grapevine’s expertise and ‘recruiting’ a group of community connectors we have created informal networks of support providing sustainable help and support to the young people and equipping these young people to cope with future problems and transitions. The community connectors will continue to work with the young people independently from the project at its end to provide ongoing support and assist in integration of the young people into their local communities.

The project wass funded for an initial period of two years which is due to end in September 2014. However, due to the success of the project we have been awarded a further years funding to build upon the work we have done so far. We will continue to support young people until the end of the project and will leave a legacy of connectors across Coventry who will continue to work with young people.

Working with communities

Throughout the project we have formed and developed links with new communities and existing communities. We have worked with service providers including social services, accommodation providers, education providers, health providers. This has enabled the young people to get advice and support, accomodation and food as well as social interaction and access to sport, exercise and interaction with community groups. As a result of this we have gathered a significant amount of intelligence in respect of the communities in Coventry and the organisations and services that work with them. Grapevine has worked closely with migrant communities to undertake some asset mapping to inform the project, and in particular the young people, of the services and support available to them.

So you think you know me

Some of the young people we have worked with have produced a short film highlighting the difficulties they face You think you know me
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Further information

Find us on Twitter and Facebook or contact us on to youngmigrant@covlaw.org.uk.

Paul Hamliln Foundation unbound
 

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