This site supports the work of EMBRACE in building a welcoming community by providing background information, details of EVENTS and ideas for response. Please browse through the pages and if you require further information, CONTACT US.


The January 2016 Prayer Letter  considers the trauma faced by people caught up in the war in Syria and encourages compassion towards those refugees from the conflict now settling in Belfast.
Please use the prayer letter to inform your prayers.
Prayer sheets from previous months can be accessed here.

Featured Event January 2016

How do churches respond to the crisis in Syria and provide a welcome for all those who seek refuge here?
Thursday 28th January | 7pm | Belfast City Hall
Overview of the current situation – Jasper Rutherford
A Biblical Response – Richard Kerr
A local response – Denise Wright
Others who are seeking asylum – an asylum seeker tells their story
Destitution among people seeking asylum – Margaret McNulty
An example of good practice – Dave Smith of the Boaz Trust

The event is free and all are most welcome.
Please book in advance by contacting Aneta Dabek,

For background information and the latest details on refugees being brought to Northern Ireland through the government’s Vulnerable Persons Relocation scheme see our Syrian refugees in Northern Ireland page.

A group of concerned Christians has set up a website to provide information and ways of responding to the Syrian Refugee Crisis, for people in Northern Ireland. Visit

Northern Ireland Calais Refugee Solidarity is collecting warm clothes and other essentials to try to help meet the immediate needs of people fleeing war torn homes. Visit their facebook page here

Evangelical Alliance has listed 5 ways the Church can respond to the Refugee Crisis.

At the EMBRACE discussion evening ‘Syrian Refugees Welcome Here?’ an information sheet was made available providing some background to the situation. Following recent developments a revised information sheet has been prepared and is available to download here

The Refugee and Asylum Forum, of which EMBRACE is a member, aware of the challenges faced by people seeking asylum who are currently in Northern Ireland, has asked for five key actions to be addressed by the Northern Ireland Executive to improve the situation for existing asylum seekers and refugees; assist the process of integration for VPR Syrian refugees and ease demand on refugee support organisations.

Building understanding in Churches

lampost3If your church is interested in learning more about migrant people and ways in which the local church can build relationships, EMBRACE can offer talks, workshops and migration awareness training. Please contact EMBRACE Development Worker, Aneta Dabek for more information on 077313 78037 or email A list of what EMBRACE can offer church groups is available to view here.

English Classes

churchhall3 (1)

There are many opportunities to improve English language ability with classes run in most towns across Northern Ireland, for details of classes and when they are run see our list here and on our English Language Classes page. If you know of any other classes which are not listed, or know of any changes to the information given, please send the details to Aneta

For EMBRACE resources to support learning English see our toolkit.

New Resources 

For all EMBRACE resources visit our resources page

EMBRACE News sheet 32 Autumn 2015
Our latest news sheet is focused on the current Syrian Refugee crisis and the reception of Syrian refugees locally.

Who’s Who? Who’s Here? 2015
A leaflet providing an overview of migration locally. Hard copies are available on request from our office.


The EMBRACE Hear My Voice DVD is a collection of personal reflections of migrant people and people seeking asylum as they settle in Northern Ireland, and includes some of the challenges and some thoughts about what the local church has done to help. The DVD can be viewed here, or a hard disc copy is available free on request from our office.

Information Sheets

EMBRACE has prepared a series of information sheets on aspects of migration
Opening our Eyes to the Reality of Human Trafficking Revised Spring 2015
Migration and Us Revised Spring 2015
Refugees in Northern Ireland  Autumn 2015
Responding to Racism Revised Spring 2015
Roma People Revised February 2014
The Polish Community Summer 2013
Attitudes Towards People of African Descent Autumn 2014
Opinions on Immigration in Northern Ireland Revised Spring 2015
Interfaith Relationships Autumn 2015
Syrian Refugees  January 2016

Racial Equality Strategy Response

You can read the consultation response from EMBRACE to A Sense of Belonging: Delivering Social Change through a Racial Equality Strategy for Northern Ireland 2014–24 prepared by the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister here.


I was a stranger…

strangerNorthern Ireland is becoming richer in its diversity of culture and ethnicity as it becomes home to an increasing number of people from other countries. Some come seeking asylum, others to fill job vacancies or to study in our universities and colleges. There are also people from minority ethnic backgrounds who have always lived here. The needs of each are as individual as the experiences each person brings, but common to all is the desire to be safe and to know the acceptance of the local community.

…and you made me welcome 

welcomeEMBRACE seeks to equip the church to fulfil its call to welcome our new neighbours, by providing information, training, materials and channels for practical help. In doing this we seek to build a community which welcomes and respects diversity. See About Us for a fuller description of our activities.

On this site you will find information relating to the situation for people seeking asylum, refugees, migrant workers and people from resident minority ethnic backgrounds within Northern Ireland. There are also links to related sites. Please use our Contact Us link for further information or to comment on this site.


‘I was a stranger and you made me welcome’
Matthew 25:35

We have taken reasonable measures to check the accuracy of the information on this site and trust that it is useful. However, it is intended as a general summary of information and should not take the place of written law or regulations.

The inclusion of links to organisations in any section is not an endorsement of these groups. We cannot take responsibility for information contained on other websites.