A friend in loneliness

Every Monday she called me

Alice claimed Asylum in March 2020 and soon after was dispersed to Nottingham. A referral was made by a charity in Portsmouth to Refugee Roots for her. Our support worker Rose began supporting Alice with a number of issues and Refugee Roots were privileged in supporting Alice to access medical support, legal support and meet some of her most basic needs. 

Alice was moved into a Nottingham hotel where she experienced a number of difficulties and challenges which she expressed as “not a suitable living standard” but some things improved with the help and support of many local charities and community organisations, the local authorities and the housing provider. Their combined efforts to improve things are appreciated but Alice still feels there is room to improve. 

The hardest thing for Alice was the impact on her mental health, feeling afraid...a feeling like “compression” in her head. It’s been a lonely time for Alice.

Alice was matched with Maggie who began volunteering with us at the beginning of the lockdown. 

If it wasn't for Refugee Roots and their assistance with Maggie calling me to see how my wellbeing is, I don’t think I would be sitting here to have this conversation..sometimes it felt so lonely

Our befriender supported Alice remotely on the phone through lockdown and for sometime after. However recently Maggie and Alice have been able to meet in person, Alice said now “we sit down and can have a coffee, ,it was nice for me to finally meet her”. Alice has appreciated the help and support from Maggie to access toiletries and clothing through Refugee Roots, signposting and making referrals to other providers (Migrant Help, Sharewear, Host, NNRF, St Nics Church of England). 

Most recently Alice attended our women's group meeting at Windmill Community Gardens in an allotment where a socially distanced group of women and volunteers have met for English conversation, language learning , arts and crafts together.