the blog entry is written by Lucy who volunteers with SLRA for more than a year and supports the Youth Casework Team. Read how her journey with SLRA is:
My name is Lucy, I volunteer with the Youth Team during the drop-in on Thursday afternoons. My tasks can vary week to week – no Thursday is ever the same! I spend time on lots of different things, including travel document, family reunification and crisis grant applications for young people, as well as writing to various services and officials in collaboration with young people who come to the drop in (for example housing providers and MPs). I have also attended meetings with young people to support them, such as at college or to Home Office appointments.
Sometimes it’s challenging; although I’m able to support them with a particular issue, I find it difficult knowing that they are leaving the office to face many interconnected challenges in their daily lives related to a hostile immigration system and barriers systemic to life here in the UK. Despite this, it is always nice to hear a positive outcome as a result of support you’ve been able to provide.
One memory I have is accompanying a young person to their substantial interview at the Home Office where we negotiated a housing-related issue with the interviewer – this resulted in a positive outcome for them, and it felt good to know that at least one challenge had been removed. It is gratifying to know when a young person has felt heard or faithfully represented, especially in a society where they are so routinely ignored or dismissed.
Lucy supports the Youth team for more than a year now. She learnt a lot during the months and supported the team in many ways. It is great to have volunteers that have the capacity to regularly support our case work team, to develop relationships with the people we work with, and get to know the work we are doing in depth. Big thank you to Lucy.