IMG 3127

National Network Meeting: New Vulnerabilities and New Challenges

14th December 2023 | From our team

The Clewer Initiative

In mid-December, The Clewer Initiative held a National Network Meeting for project leads and volunteers from across the country.

We gathered in London to learn more about the current modern slavery landscape, brainstorming best practice, sharing our experience and making plans for action. The theme of the day was "Protecting Migrants and Refugees from Human Trafficking".

Bishop Alastair Redfern kicked off the day with a talk entitled Migration and the Church. He provided a theological reflection from Psalm 137, exploring the fact that migration presents a continuing challenge to human societies, one that addresses the heart, as well as the head, and must always begin with welcome, whatever the necessary, practical outcomes. Following this, the team at The Clewer Initiative shared Clewer resources that exist to educate and protect refugees from exploitation.

A quick snapshot of the day

In the afternoon, a representative from Hestia helped us to understand how the new Illegal Migration Act may affect victims of modern slavery and also the way the NRM and support available is changing. After this, we talked in groups about the role the community and church can play in protecting refugees from the threat and reality of Human Trafficking and discussed the challenge of operating in today’s environment with migration numbers increasing.

We considered the role church social action projects have in providing support and care for increasing numbers of vulnerable people. We also thought about the potential surge in demand that food banks could face if victims of modern slavery have limited or no access to public funds through the NRM and if mass migration continues.

We will meet again in January to continue the conversation and make further plans about how we can respond to the new vulnerabilities and challenges our country and church face.

IMG 3127

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