VOL. NO: 55      DATE:
 
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AFRICAN ECHO NEWS

WHAT IS REFUGEE VOICE WALES (RVW)?
By: Pierrot Ngadi, Coordinator, Wales

A Brief History
REFUGEE VOICE WALES is a membership organization composed of 32 Refugee community organizations (RCOs) that have been set up by refugees and asylum seekers to support the settlement and integration of their community members in Wales.

As a platform RVWempowers it members, reduces the isolation that individual RCOs experience as single units and offers the unique opportunity for RCOs to meet together, talk to and listen to each other, and to jointly plan a strategy of action. It also ensures that RCOs understand the structures of policy making in the UK, are kept informed of significant changes to policy and have access to training and capacity building opportunities so that they can serve their communities more effectively.

It is about refugees speaking for and by themselves, with the confidence that their voice reflects collective experience, expertise and aims. Ii is driven by and agenda established by consensus and shared by the whole community of refugees in Wales.

RVW has achieved an international recognition for its work by providing its representatives to speak at regional, national and international conferences.

Summary of RVW's Aims and Objectives

In order to participate in and contribute to regeneration in Wales, RVW members' are working hard to create the opportunity for their communities to achieve secure, full and active lives. RVWhas established a positive relationships and partnership within the local community, organizations, Home Office and the WAG RVW recognizes that refugees and refugee self-organization have a unique, vital and complimentary role to play in promoting this social, economic and cultural integration of their communities.

In this purpose we have organized various meetings with different refugee community organizations (RCOs) present in Wales on the inclusion policy. For as long as RCOs remain marginalised their potential cannot be fully achieved, and integration will take longer.

RVW gives refugee community a structure for producing their collective voice and for that strong and confident voice to be heard by a wide range of agencies and organizations in Wales. This provides a valuable resource for agencies seeking to engage with a 'hard to reach' group. In this way genuine and effective partnerships can be formed and Forum can contribute effectively to progressing key targets of Community Cohesion, Diversity, Enterprise and Equality of Opportunity for the good of the whole community in Wales.

 

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