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Our Mission Statement

What is City of Sanctuary:

City of Sanctuary is a network of local groups, which includes boroughs, towns and cities across the UK and Ireland, who are all committed to building a culture of welcome across every sphere of society. City of Sanctuary operates under local group names which can be found on the groups’ page on each group website.

“City of Sanctuary is a movement committed to building a culture of hospitality and welcome, especially for refugees seeking sanctuary from war and persecution” (City of Sanctuary 2017 –

Plymouth as a City of Sanctuary

Plymouth has a long tradition of not only being a welcoming city, but also a dispersal city for asylum seekers and refugees. We have a proud history of supporting those fleeing conflict and natural disaster from around the world. Now, recognised as a City of Sanctuary, here in Plymouth we aim to ensure this historical and hospitable tradition continues for many years to come.

As a group, we will uphold and be proactive in ensuring that Plymouth is an inclusive, supporting and welcoming city for ALL seeking sanctuary in the United Kingdom. We aim to ensure the local community of Plymouth works together to generate, grow and enrich the day to day relationships with all who are dispersed to the city, who settled here and those who live, visit and work in the city.

Plymouth is focused on sharing the vision put forward by the City of Sanctuary which represents opportunities at grass roots level for us all to grow as one compassionate, welcoming and integrated community. By welcoming refugees and asylum seekers arriving or already living in Plymouth we intend to make our city part of this national movement.

In simple terms, we do this by bringing organisations, businesses, individuals and the wider community together to provide practical support through community projects and events, raising awareness and campaigning for social justice, therefore, contributing to the vision and culture of the City of Sanctuary.

Who are we?

Plymouth City of Sanctuary consists of representatives from the local community and various organisations.

“We have come together to foster and build on a city that already welcomes refugees. By working with the wider community and businesses across Plymouth, we intend to support this further so it operates across every sphere of society and promotes a culture of acceptance, inclusion and hospitality”.

Chris Forster, Mary Conway and Ross Maynard.

Our Mission:

Those seeking sanctuary in Plymouth will be welcomed, treated with fairness and respect and will be supported and given the opportunity to benefit and contribute to and be part of the city’s future. As a City of Sanctuary, we aim to:

  • Bring people together. In uniting we can further Plymouths culture of welcome and inclusion to refugees and asylum seekers.
  • Raise the awareness of refugees and asylum seekers throughout the city.
  • Provide a point of contact for refugees, asylum seekers organisations and volunteers and others who would like to involved in supporting Plymouth as a City of Sanctuary.
  • Honour, support and celebrate the contribution and gifts that sanctuary seekers bring to Plymouth.
  • Foster and build upon Plymouth’s rich heritage of making all people feel welcome and valued in everyday life.
  • Build a mutual understanding of different cultures and encourage integration and inclusion.
  • Work with businesses, organisations, local government, colleges, communities and individuals across the city to make Plymouth feel like a home for all through pledges of support and resources.
  • Continually support and recognise the amazing quality of work the groups, charities and organisations in Plymouth are already giving to those seeking sanctuary. We will endeavour to ensure that we work alongside these organisations to promote develop and provide additional support.

What can you do to help?

We invite you, whether you are a local community group, organisation, business or an individual to help and support in any way that would suit you. Please get in touch if you would like to be involved in our cause we would love to hear from you.

We can be contacted via email: [email protected]