Pioneer Awards 2017

The launch of Sponsor Refugees saw three Pioneer Awards presented to those who have worked tirelessly to make community sponsorship a reality. The awards were presented by Ahmad Al-Rashid and the children from one of the first resettled families.

The People and Government of Canada



Melissa Tam, a representative for the High Commission of Canada in the UK collected the award on behalf of the people and government of Canada. This award was presented to recognise that Canada has been at the forefront of the Refugees Welcome movement having welcomed over 300,000 refugees to Canada through refugee sponsorship since the 1970s. 

More recently, the Government of Canada have been supporting sponsorship through the Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative - a partnership between the Government of Canada, UNHCR, Open Society Foundation, Radcliffe Foundation and the University of Ottawa. 




Citizens Cymru Wales


This award recognised the Citizens UK chapter that did the most to pioneer community sponsorship in the UK. Out of the 10 families that were resettled as of July 2017, 2 were resettled with close support from Citizens Cymru Wales. The chapter is working to ensure another 6 families are resettled in the coming months. The award was collected by Vicky Moller from Croeso Teifi in West Wales.





St Monica’s Parish Church, Greater Manchester


St Monica’s Parish Church was recognised for its pioneering role and inspirational work in being the first group in the country to sponsor a refugee family from Syria. The award was collected by Sean Ryan on their behalf. Through Caritas Salford, St Monica's has gone on to help and support many other sponsorship groups. 





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