Nearly 200 additional refugees from Afghanistan arrive in Northamptonshire as second hotel opens its doors

“It’s extremely heartening to know that so many people believe that welcoming our former allies from the Middle East is absolutely the right thing to do”

By Carly Odell
Tuesday, 7th September 2021, 11:22 am
Updated Tuesday, 7th September 2021, 11:24 am
Refugees arriving at Heathrow. (File picture).
Refugees arriving at Heathrow. (File picture).

Another Northamptonshire hotel has closed to the public and opened its doors to refugees from Afghanistan.

As part of the Government’s Afghan resettlement scheme, West Northamptonshire Council has been asked by the Home Office to welcome additional refugees.

The authority is working with partners across emergency and health services, faith groups, and the voluntary sector to support up to an additional 180 recent arrivals.

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Around 100 refugees are already being supported in the county after arriving last week.

Councillor Jonathan Nunn, West Northamptonshire Council Leader, said: “It’s hard to imagine having to completely uproot and move to another country at a moment’s notice.

“Add to that the trauma that some families will have gone through, many with young children in tow, as they made hurried preparations to leave Afghanistan.

“Many have arrived with little more than they could carry, and we’ve all been stunned at the generosity shown by those pledging support of all sorts.

“It’s extremely heartening to know that so many people believe that welcoming our former allies from the Middle East is absolutely the right thing to do.

“It’s very important now that we help all of our new arrivals build a new life in the UK, so they can realise their aspirations of making a positive contribution.”

Colleagues at North Northamptonshire Council are starting to support West Northamptonshire Council staff to provide assistance to the arrivals at the second hotel in the West Northamptonshire area.

Cllr Jason Smithers, Leader of North Northamptonshire Council, added: “It's essential in a situation like this that we all play our part to ensure we support people in such dire need.

“North Northamptonshire Council continues to stand ready to play a role when called upon by the Home Office.

“Until that call, we have offered to support our colleagues in West Northamptonshire Council in any way we can.

"We owe a debt of gratitude to these brave men and women who did not hesitate to support our servicemen and women in their hour of need.

“As a county and even as a country, we now need to step up and show the same level of commitment they afforded us when we needed them."

Voluntary Impact Northamptonshire has set up an online fundraiser where money raised will be used to help the needs of refugees, including course and transport.

In less than a week the fundraiser has made £5,000. The target is £15,000. Donate here.

Editor’s note:

This newspaper has published this article to inform readers and members of the public about what is being done in the county to help the international crisis.

It is imperative to do so and we will continue to report on updates on the situation and any links to our county.

We will monitor comments on social media relating to these stories.

Any comments displaying hate will be deleted and we will not hesitate to ban users who continue to post such comments.

We are saddened by the fact we have to include this editor's note but our previous experiences have shown it is necessary to do so.