For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me. I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me. Matthew 25: 35-36
EMBRACE facilitates others in responding to people who have practical needs. The group does not help people directly but networks with other specialist groups such as the Simon Community, Homeplus, the Welcome Organisation, and the Northern Ireland Community of Refugees and Asylum Seekers (NICRAS).
Money raised by this fund has been used in a number of ways. Examples include assisting destitute foreign nationals who have needed to return home urgently, and sending on the belongings of people who have been removed to their own country following detention at the end of their asylum cases. Others have been helped off the streets by the payment of a few nights hostel fees where no other funds were available.
See EMBRACE Funding for more information or contact us for further details.
We have a number of criteria which must be met before funds are released. If you would like information on these please contact our office. In every case we do not work directly with individuals but by referral from reputable groups such as homelessness or refugee charities.
Migrant workers who lose their jobs, or whose contracts have ended, may end up on the streets, as most have no immediate right to full welfare benefits, may have been living in accommodation tied to their job, and have probably underestimated the local cost of living. With no means of support they can quickly become destitute. Some foreign nationals have no recourse to public funds and are not entitled to beds in most hostels if they become destitute, which can happen for a number of reasons.
See also BBC news item from Dec 2008 here
A practical response
In 2006, EMBRACE working alongside several Belfast churches and community organisations who work with homeless people, set up the On the Street project. This initiative raised awareness of migrant destitution and offered a positive response through the donation and distribution of clothing, bedding, toiletries and foodstuffs to those on the street and in hostels, both local and migrant people.
Whilst the needs have continued, the capacity of EMBRACE to manage the project diminished and in Autumn 2014 the project was handed to Storehouse, a charity specialising in distributing donated goods to people in need. Matt Orme of Storehouse now co ordinates the collection and distribution of goods for vulnerable migrant people. If you wish to make a contribution contact Matt by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
on the street COLLECTION POSTER
on the street QUIET SAMARITANS STORY