The Diocese of Leeds welcomes its first Syrian Refugee family to arrive via Community Sponsorship.
Members of the ReSETTLEment Community Sponsorship Group set out one August morning to Manchester Airport to meet the family they had been preparing for over the past 12 months. “I don’t know who was more nervous” said Paul Kelly the project lead, “us or the travellers”. Then the moment of truth when both groups see each other for the first time and all nervousness evaporates with big kisses between the women and more reserved handshakes between the men, all accompanied by big beaming smiles despite the tiredness.
Then it’s time for the journey to Settle and the joys of Manchester rush hour – welcome to England!
At last at their house in Settle, the family see their new home for the first time and cannot really believe it. They also and meet two other volunteers who have prepared a Syrian meal for them and the Grandma in the family invites all the volunteers to stay to share their meal.
At the end of the day, everyone is exhausted but relieved and throughout it all the family toddler is running around playing ball as if she has lived in Skipton all her life.