Need help?


The latest news from Asylum Welcome.

We also contribute to the debates on asylum and detention in the media.

Asylum Welcome is seeking an experienced, talented and forward-thinking Director

Friday, February 07, 2020

Asylum Welcome is a respected Oxford-based charity offering support to asylum seekers, refugees and vulnerable migrants, advising them on the asylum process, on day-to-day issues and offering a range of practical help.

We are looking for a Director experienced and talented - in leading the small staff team in their management and support of over 100 volunteers delivering our front-line services; in working with trustees to address the strategic priorities of quality, efficiency and sustainability; in the management of all aspects of a lively charity.

Forward-thinking - in responding to changes in the circumstances for asylum seekers and migrants, to changes in their needs, and in advocacy locally and nationally on asylum and migration issues.

To find out more, please download the Job Description.

To apply, please click here

Closing date: 8 March 2020

Interviews likely in the week of 23 March 2020

New Fundraiser position available at Asylum Welcome

Thursday, February 06, 2020

This is an exciting, new role whose core purpose is to expand and build upon the recent fundraising successes of Asylum Welcome. As demand for our work grows, Asylum Welcome seeks a fundraiser to work with its Fundraising and Development Manager. This highly-regarded Oxford charity already has a healthy spread of diverse funding sources and a loyal supporter base: we need your help to reach our potential. This is a new post, suitable for someone with solid fundraising experience and a commitment to refugees.

To find out more, please download the Job Description.

To apply, please click hereWe will not consider any incomplete applications without CV and a detailed supporting statement setting out how you meet the person specification and why you want to join us.

Closing date: 06 March 2020

Asylum Welcome publishes testimonies of its detention visitors

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Refugee Week - Weaving Networks of Support, Thursday 20th June

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Asylum Welcome Fundraiser

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Statement on the Closure of Campsfield House Immigration Removal Centre

Monday, November 12, 2018

We welcome the announcement on 9th November 2018 that, influenced by the recommendations of Stephen Shaw’s reports, the government commits to reduce by 40% the number of people detained under immigration powers in the UK. We welcome the decision to close Campsfield House Immigration Removal Centre in Oxfordshire. Reducing the number of detention centres and those detained within them is an important step towards a fairer asylum and immigration system in the U.K.

For almost 25 years, Asylum Welcome has seen first-hand the human impact of detention at Campsfield.

With this historic announcement we want to pay tribute to many people:

  • to people detained at Campsfield who have struggled to maintain their safety, dignity, health and family relationships
  • to local volunteers who have been part of the Asylum Welcome detainee support service and Campsfield visiting group and helped ensure that detainees have a daily visit and are able to communicate better with doctors, lawyers and their families
  • to the networks of individuals and professional bodies who support our work and support the welfare of detainees, including the long-standing Close Campsfield Campaign
  • and finally we pay tribute to those staff members at Campsfield who carried out their duties with respect and compassion.

Asylum Welcome will work with the remaining detainees until Campsfield closes in May 2019. Asylum Welcome’s other services for asylum seekers and refugees living in the community in Oxfordshire will continue into the future. In coming months we will be reviewing the implications for Asylum Welcome’s work so that we can put our energy and experience where it is most useful, pass on what we have learned to other visiting groups, and celebrate the legacy of our visitors. We will be consulting widely on the best direction for our organisation.

We urge members of the public to maintain an interest in the welfare of detainees who will continue to be held at removal centres elsewhere in the UK that are considered to run a more harsh regime than at Campsfield. Their safety relies on your concern.

Thank you for your support for the work of Asylum Welcome.

Join Asylum Welcome’s Board!

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

With demand for Asylum Welcome’s services increasing and our voice gaining prominence in national policy debates, we are seeking to appoint outstanding individuals to our Board, including the roles of Treasurer and Company Secretary.


Person Specification


Prospective Trustees will:

-       Be committed to the rights and welfare of refugees and to Asylum Welcome’s vision, mission and values.

-       Have demonstrable expertise and/or experience of a relevant field, particularly one of the following: finance and accounting; fundraising; HR and organisational development; administration and management; health and/or advice services to vulnerable people; lived experience of asylum determination processes, in the UK or elsewhere.

-       Be experienced more widely in the management of people and/or resources, for example by working in a management team.

-       Be able to contribute to and ensure Asylum Welcome’s financial sustainability and strategic development.


As an organisation committed to reflecting our diverse and vibrant Oxford community, we particularly welcome applications from people from black, minority ethnic and refugee backgrounds.


Get in touch…


Email your CV and a short (no more than 1 page) covering letter setting out why you want to join us and how you meet the person specification to Marcus Thompson, Chair of Trustees


Being a trustee


As a trustee you will:

-       Actively participate in meetings, offering guidance and support to ensure that Asylum Welcome continues to do the vital and life-saving work it was set up to do.

-       Scrutinise Asylum Welcome’s budgets, management accounts and financial statements, ensuring that they meet the organisation’s needs and the relevant regulatory requirements.

-       Ensure Asylum Welcome is complying with its governing documents and the relevant law, as well as updating, following and reviewing its own policies and procedures.

-       Act, with care and skill, in Asylum Welcome’s best interests.


For further information, click here.


The Board


Asylum Welcome is governed by a Board of 6-12 Trustees elected at the AGM. Trustees (who must be Members) normally serve for 3 years. Additional trustees may be co-opted.


The Board meets 6-8 times a year, currently early evening on a Wednesday. Regular dates are agreed a year in advance. Individual trustees also join or lead the Board’s Sub-Committees and working groups.

Short talk about Asylum Welcome by Kate Smart

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

This is a short talk given by Kate Smart Director of Asylum Welcome at Weatley URC Church , January 2018.

Bishop Steven is the new patron of Asylum Welcome

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Asylum Welcome is delighted to announce that the Right Reverend Dr. Steven Croft, Bishop of Oxford, is to become the charity's patron. Bishop Steven has a deep interest in the welfare of refugees and is keen to support efforts to enable them to rebuild their lives. Asylum Welcome achieves that through a large network of compassionate and expert volunteers and through the support of people in all parts of community.

Shaw Report: less detention & more safeguards needed, Asylum Welcome testimony cited

Sunday, January 24, 2016

In 2015, following evidence and criticisms from a range of organisations and individuals including under-cover film from detention centres, the Home Secretary commissioned Stephen Shaw (former Prisons Ombudsman) to carry out a review into the welfare in detention of vulnerable persons. The Shaw Report was published in January 2016. Testimony from Asylum Welcome is cited the report. The report concludes:

“I my view, a smaller, more focused, strategically planned immigration detention estate, subject to the many reforms I have outlined in this report, would both be more protective of the welfare of vulnerable people and deliver better value for the taxpayer. Immigration detention has increased, is increasing, and – whether by better screening, more effective reviews, or formal time limit – it ought to be reduced."

You can read the full report (which includes an executive summary)

and Asylum Welcome’s submission

Submission to Vulnerable Detainee Review:Asylum Welcome May 2015