Press Release

Refugee Roots

Tuesday 7th April 2020

Covid-19 Appeal launched to help Nottingham’s refugees

Nottingham-based charity Refugee Roots has launch an appeal for donations to help keep some of its services going during the Covid-19 lock down. The organisation has set a modest target of £3000 to raise as soon as possible. The funding will be used to run a telephone-based befriending and advice service, as well as basic English lessons. 


Refugee Roots, formerly The Rainbow Project, helps asylum seekers and refugees build relationships and navigate the complexities of coping with a new life in the UK. Before the Covid-19 lock down the organisation, based in Hyson Green, used the Access Project to give information, advice, and guidance, run art and social groups, food and clothing distribution and English lessons.

Adam Baker of Refugee Roots says: “Refugees are some of the most vulnerable people in this crisis. They are hit by a deeper isolation few of us could imagine and they simply can’t cope alone. That’s why we are asking the public for help. We are a small charity that is making a big difference. Extra cash support means we will be able to contact each person and make sure they have what they need. In normal circumstances we would be getting volunteers and asylum seekers together for a few hours a week. They’d practice English, perhaps join in an art project and we’d make every effort to link them with the many communities already based in the city. But we simply can’t do this now.”

Refugee Roots support worker Rose Henshaw has recently helped new mother Yara by arranging for food and other basic items, including nappies supplied by Grace Church Baby Basics, to be delivered to her home. Worried and concerned about the virus, and feeling isolated and alone, Yara said 'thank you for helping me; I will appreciate the regular phone support'. 

To donate to the crisis work of Refugee Roots, please go to and find the details in the Appeals section.



Media contact: Louise Third MBE 07773 288342 / [email protected]

Adam Baker is available for interview.


Background Notes


Started by Graham Burton at St Stephen’s with St Paul’s Church in Hyson Green, the Rainbow Project was set-up to address racial inequality and injustice, bringing a vision of a truly diverse and welcoming church. This Christian project, pioneered with a strong commitment to social inclusion, began to focus more on support for refugees and asylum seekers.


With the increasing focus on providing refugee support the charity re-launched under the new name Refugee Roots in November 2019.


The original charity’s founder Reverend Graham Burton was presented with the Hubert Walter Award for Reconciliation by the Most Reverend Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury in 2018. The award acknowledged Graham and his wife Gillian’s tireless work for peace especially between Christians and Muslims.


To find out more about Refugee Roots visit