My Account

Richmond is officially a Borough of Sanctuary

10 July 2024

We are proud to announce that Richmond upon Thames has been awarded Borough of Sanctuary status by City of Sanctuary UK.

The accreditation recognises the work Richmond has done to date, including developing a three-year Richmond Sanctuary Strategy and a commitment made to welcome, support, and empower sanctuary seekers living in the borough. 

Spokesperson for Communities, Equalities and the Voluntary Sector, Cllr Nancy Baldwin, said: “I am proud that we have come together as a borough to support and empower those who seek sanctuary here. 

“Richmond has a proud history of welcoming refugees into its community, from the arrival of Belgians during World War I, to more recent populations of displaced Afghans, Syrians, Hong Kongers, and Ukrainians. This accreditation is a manifest symbol of the open and generous welcome that the people of Richmond have always provided to those fleeing repression and conflict in their home countries.” 

We have expanded the resources we direct towards refugees within a newly formed Refugee Services team, and new Richmond Sanctuary Strategy and a Borough of Sanctuary Fund, to support voluntary and community sector groups to organise projects to help sanctuary seekers integrate into the local community. 

The newly appointed Sanctuary Champion, Cllr Fiona Sacks said: “I am thrilled and humbled to be named Sanctuary Champion. I am determined that in partnership we can work to make sure everyone in our community is able to thrive, no matter where they are from or how long they have lived here. 

Director of Multicultural Richmond, Ravi Arora, said “Our work never stops and we continue to break down barriers, reducing disadvantage, increasing awareness of hate crime and bringing people together from all backgrounds, cultures and races.” 

Over 650 Richmond households have welcomed Ukrainians into their homes and provided accommodation. This resulted in over 1,000 Ukrainians arriving in the borough since March 2022. This is the eighth highest population in London, and sixteenth highest nationally. 

Share this

Up to: July 2024

Updated: 12 July 2024

Stay up to date! Make sure you subscribe to our email updates.