Tim_Finch.jpg   Tim Finch

Tim is the founding director of Sponsor Refugees. He was an early advocate of introducing sponsorship when working with Citizens UK on the refugee crisis in 2015 and 2016.  He is a former director of communications at the Refugee Council and head of migration research at the think tank, IPPR.  He set up the migration communications agency, IMiX and is the founding chair of the migration and arts charity, Counterpoints Arts. You can contact Tim here.

Esmat_Jeraf.jpg   Esmat Jeraj

Esmat is a community organiser for Sponsor Refugees. Esmat holds a BA in History from the University of Reading, following which she has held a number of roles in the public and private sector. She has worked with Citizens UK for 2 years, initially working on media and communications before project managing the Citizens Commission on Islam, Participation & Public Life. Its report “Missing Muslims: Unlocking British Muslim Potential for the Benefit of All” was published in July 2017. You can contact Esmat here

Bekele_Woyecha.jpg   Bekele Woyecha

Bekele is the Senior Project Manager for Sponsor Refugees. He has worked for Citizens UK since 2011, working mainly on Refugees Welcome and community sponsorship in recent years. Previously Bekele was a human rights activist, writer, community leader and volunteer for the British Red Cross. He also held senior managerial positions in government departments in his home country Ethiopia. Bekele was the human rights defender fellow of the University of Nottingham in 2009, where he studied International Human Rights Law. He also studied Nonviolent Conflict at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy in Boston, USÁ and took part in the Global Change Agents Programme at Harvard Kennedy School in 2017. You can contact Bekele here.

Advisory Group

Danny-Rich.jpg   Rabbi Danny Rich – Chair

Rabbi Danny Rich has been the Senior Rabbi & Chief Executive of Liberal Judaism since 2005 and was rabbi to Kingston Liberal Synagogue for nearly two decades. Rabbi Rich is a Justice of the Peace, and a hospital and prison chaplain. He is a President of the Council of Christians & Jews and a member of the Council of Imams and Rabbis. He was a vice chair of the National Refugee Welcome Board which pioneered the idea of community sponsorship of refugees in 2015.

Zrinka.jpg   Zrinka Bralo

Zrinka Bralo is CEO of Migrants Organise – the grass roots organising platform for migrants and refugees. Zrinka is a refugee from Sarajevo, where she was a journalist during the siege in the 1990s. She is a founder of Women on the Move Awards that celebrates achievement of migrant and refugee women and winner of the 2011 Voices of Courage Award. She served as a Commissioner on the Independent Asylum Commission, and was part of the team that successfully negotiated the end of immigration detention of children in 2010. She is a founding Chair of the National Refugee Welcome Board and on the Board of Directors of the Women's Refugee Commission in New York.

Nick_Coke.jpg   Major Nick Coke

Major Nick Coke is the co-leader of Raynes Park Community Church and Refugee Response Coordinator for The Salvation Army in the United Kingdom and Ireland. He, along with other civil society leaders, helped to co-design the Community Sponsorship of Refugees scheme with government and in February 2017 his church was the third group to receive a refugee family under the programme. He was commissioned as a Salvation Army officer in 2000 and has held appointments in Cardiff and London. He has been involved with Citizens UK and community organising for many years, firstly in Tower Hamlets and now in Merton.

Heaven-Crawley.jpg   Professor Heaven Crawley

Heaven Crawley is Professor of International Migration at Coventry University’s interdisciplinary Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations. She was previously head of asylum and immigration research at the UK Home Office and Associate Director of the think tank IPPR. She joined Coventry University from Swansea University where she was Director of the Centre for Migration Policy Research. Heaven has written and published extensively on a wide range of asylum and immigration issues and has served as a specialist advisor for a number of UK Parliamentary inquiries. She has served as a Trustee for Migrant Voice and the Welsh Refugee Council and is currently Patron of Asylum Justice and the Baobab Centre for Young Survivors in Exile.

Hasanain_Jaffer.jpg   Hasanain Jaffer

Hasanain is director of Jaffer Group Ltd - a chain of optical practices in the West Midlands. He is also a trustee of the KSIMC (Clifton Road Mosque) in Birmingham - A large community with an active role in the city. He sits on the National Council of Citizens UK and works with their local chapter in Birmingham on a variety of issues - including support for refugees locally. The KSIMC of Birmingham are partners with the Methodist Church in the first Community Sponsorship application in the West Midlands. They are also in the process of submitting their own application.

Neil Murrray   Neil Murrray

Neil Murray is a doctor based in Edinburgh. He trained in anaesthesia and intensive care medicine before becoming a general practitioner 15 years ago. He has worked in the fields of pain management and addictions medicine, and has experience working with local authorities on a variety of health care issues. He is a trustee of Volant Trust which is a funder of Sponsor Refugees.
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