UCLan students join communities in Burnley to help Syrians settle in Lancashire

Students and local community groups joined forces to help Syrian refugee families feel welcomed in their new communities.

UCLan students talking to the refugees
UCLan students talking to the refugees

Community leadership and medicine students from the University of Central Lancashire were among those who volunteered to be ‘buddies’ to the refugees who are making their new homes in East Lancashire.

A special welcome event took place recently at UCLan Burnley’s Campus and attracted more than 30 Syrian families who have been resettled in areas within the county.

Lecturer Bob Walley, from UCLan’s Centre for Volunteering and Community Leadership, said: “The event was a huge success and it was great to see so many people there. The aim of the day was to link families up with our students to help in a peer mentoring or buddying capacity supported as volunteers through us at CVCL.

“The plan is to match up the interested students, some of whom are international students, with the Syrian families."

They will then be able to meet up, perhaps have a cup of tea, help the refugees practice conversational English and talk about different things that go on in the areas.