Edinburgh MP meets Craigmillar Syrian Men’s Group
MP for Edinburgh East Tommy Sheppard met with the Craigmillar Syrian Men’s Group this week to learn more about how they’re settling into life in Edinburgh.
A peer support group for men from the community, the Syrian Men’s Group provides opportunities for local people to meet, have fun, learn together, form new friendships and develop lasting positive change together, for themselves and the community. The aim and ethos of the project is to support mutual aid, informal learning, and community-led solutions.
Members of the group chatted to Mr Sheppard about the challenges of learning a new language, adjusting to the culture and building new networks.
The meeting took place at the Hays Community Hub, opened by Places for People Scotland in 2021 to provide a space in the heart of the community that has become home to a clothing charity, a community pantry and a digital access point. It is also a thriving venue for events and provides youth work drop-ins as well as other wellbeing activities.
Tommy Sheppard, MP for Edinburgh East, said: “I am proud that Scotland has welcomed so many refugees from all over the world into our communities so they can rebuild their lives here. It was a pleasure meeting with the group to hear about their experiences, before and after arriving in Scotland, and their hopes for the future.
“We also discussed the lessons that can be learnt from their experiences to ensure that other refugees fleeing persecution and war are treated with dignity, and get the support they need at what is undoubtedly one of the most difficult situations someone can go through.
“People and community are clearly a big part of the Craigmillar hub and everyone involved in its success should feel very proud of what has been built here.”