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What can The Ask Club do for you?

The Ask Club – Help, Support, Advice, Guidance for people who are seeking asylum, refugees and migrants

The Ask Club is an activity and advice drop-in session, which is held each week, at the Skelmersdale Ecumenical Centre.

The Ask Club is a service provided by the Skelmersdale Ecumenical Centre, which is a registered UK charity.

The Ask Club is staffed by an advice centre member of staff and volunteers.

Our mission is to support you as a person and not merely a reference number.

Perhaps you are seeking asylum? While you live locally, we’ll try to help you on your personal journey to getting leave to remain, and as you transition to life in the UK as a refugee.

Are you a person with leave to remain in the UK as a refugee? It is not easy finding your way through British bureaucracy. We’ll do what we can to answer your questions, direct you to accurate information, and advocate on your behalf as you try to access health and welfare services.

Alternatively, you live and work in West Lancashire as a migrant worker? Are you having problems with your employer or landlord? We will do our best to ensure you get the correct information which you can use then to make your own choices and decisions. We will signpost you to legal advice and if necessary we will help you report problems to the local government and or police.

We offer a friendly welcome and a safe space for you to visit and socialise with your friends.

You are an adult and you have the freedom to make your own decisions. Part of our mission is to provide you with the correct information and advice to help you make an informed decision.

We will do our best to give you essential information translated into a language which you can comprehend.

If you need and want support, we can help in the following ways.

Health

Our staff are experienced at providing people like you with help, information and advice. We will endeavour to use our skills, experience and local knowledge to assist you in getting your health treatment needs fulfilled. It is not easy speaking or listening in a foreign language on the telephone. It’s not easy booking appointments or ordering medicine without access to the Internet. We can help you access NHS services e.g. GP, dentist, hospital consultations, and mental health therapy, etc.

We can help you order your prescription medicine if you are unable to do so yourself.

We can help you complete registration forms, and read to to you patient information.

We can accompany you to doctor, dentist and or hospital appointments.

Welfare

If you are seeking asylum and living in West Lancashire then you probably receive a Section 95 or Section 4 NASS weekly living allowance. This means you are always short of money to buy food you like to eat. We work with local charitable organisations who will give you extra food. We gather food donations and will make these freely available at our weekly drop-in sessions.

We understand the enormous anxiety you feel while waiting for a positive decision from the Home Office. We can direct you to local services which can perhaps help you manage your anxiety and depression.

Our weekly drop-in session is a safe space for you. We encourage you to leave your bedroom, get out of the house and come and have a cup of tea or coffee, a chat, play games, or just sit and be around other people.

Asylum Law and Asylum Claim information

We are not accredited legal advisors. However, we know people who are asylum law solicitors and accredited asylum claim advisors. We can introduce you to these solicitors and advisors. We can signpost you to information to help you better understand the asylum claim process. We can mediate and aid communication between you and your legal advisor. If you find it difficult to contact your advisor, read their correspondence or make your desires understood, we will advocate with them on your behalf.

Mentoring

It is not easy to navigate life, especially in a foreign country and in a foreign language. While we do not have all the answers, we can help you access proper sources of information, we can listen, offer our personal opinion and advice, and if necessary refer you to sources of professional employment, education, immigration, mental health etc information and advice.

Modern Slavery: If you suspect modern slavery, report it to the Modern Slavery Helpline on 08000 121 700 or the police on 101. In an emergency always call 999. Don’t leave it to someone else. Your information could save a life.

National Crime Agency: https://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/what-we-do/crime-threats/modern-slavery-and-human-trafficking

The Skelmersdale Ecumenical Centre is a Charitable Incorporated Organisation.

Charity Number 1184507