Refugees Welcome North Somerset

Name: Befriender
Organisation: Refugees Welcome North Somerset
Type: Part Time
While we are particularly interested in volunteers who are available during the weekdays, we have flexible opportunities to suit those with limited or ad hoc availability.


Can you help welcome people escaping war as they resettle and rebuild their lives in our community?

North Somerset Council has committed to welcoming 14 Syrian families as part of the Government’s Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme.

Once a family has arrived, RWNS Befrienders can provide support in the following ways:
• Accompanying families or individuals to appointments, to help deal with the bureaucracy and provide support
• Giving help and advice about local groups and services available, how to get involved and support in attending
• Listening to what individuals have to say
• Offering companionship to address the isolation of arriving in a new place
• Helping with information and advice about our local culture and community
• Helping to practice language skills in a safe and friendly environment
• Introducing to other people and connections in the local area

Volunteers may meet their matched Befriendees in the community, at the family’s home or at Refugees Welcome Drop-in Weston-Super-Mare.

DBS check, training and support is provided and commitment can be flexible to suit our Befrienders’ situation.

While we meet and support people across North Somerset, our work is mainly focussed in Weston-Super-Mare.

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Organisation Description

We are a group of local people who do what we can to help those fleeing from persecution, armed conflict or other trauma. We aim to help them resettle in a safe place, where they can begin to recover and rebuild their lives. We will continue to campaign and collect aid for those for whom there is still no safe place to go.


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Cause / Interests

  • Race and Ethnicity and Refugees

Types of Activity

  • Befriending and Buddying

Skills and Qualifications


Friendly individuals who can spend time getting to know their matched families. It will require good listening skills, patience and a sense of humour. Expereince of teaching ESOL would be useful but not at all essential.


An opportunity to make friends with newly arrived families and other befrienders. You will get to see our local area from a different perspective. You may also have the opportunity to appreciate different language, food and coffee.

Additional/Specific Suitabilities

Minimum Age: 18
Maximum Age: NA
Disabled Access: Yes
Wheelchair Access: Yes
Expenses: For certain appointments
Restrictions: None
Induction: Opportunity to shadow experienced Befriender
Insurance Cover: None
Special Needs: Can be discussed
Offer: Ongoing Support
Training: 2 training sessions: Volunteering expectations and Syrian History / context
Other: NA

Recruitment Method

DBS Check, Informal discussion, References