By Elaine Speyer

We have recently been working with an education team at a South Wales Local Authority to help them find out what the needs of young unaccompanied asylum seekers in their area are, and how they can be best supported.  

We invited young people to the Spark building and had a chat about what it’s like to live in Wales, what they would like to do in future, as well as what support they might need to achieve their goals.  

We had different activities that the young people could get involved in to help them answer the questions. Some of us also played ping pong, and we all enjoyed a delicious meal afterwards! 

Young people had the chance to meet with an advocate and find out more about the services they provide and how to access them.  

We found out that young people enjoy living in Wales and would love to explore more of it. They are keen to make new friends and to learn more about the culture. It is also important for them to have positive adult role models in their lives, and opportunities to work through their trauma. The young people have lots of different hobbies and interests that some of them need support to access. They also have a lot of different ideas for what they want to do in their future.  

Next, we will share what we have found out with the Local Authority, and we would like to meet with the young people again, to see what they would like to happen next with this work.  

We really enjoyed meeting the young people, and hearing what they have to say about their lives here in Wales. It was fantastic to get feedback from their support worker that they had enjoyed the session, and we look forward to hopefully working with them again soon.