Mary Thompson Fund

The Mary Thompson Fund is a hardship fund responding to the critical and emergency needs of those who are seeking sanctuary or are settled refugees in the Tees Valley, for things such as:

medical expenses
emergency food packs
furniture for unfurnished accommodation
maternity wear and baby needs
expenses incurred when meeting solicitors
phone cards
travel costs to visit detained relatives
help towards college expenses
travel arrangements for school children
three nights’ emergency accommodation
Established in 2001 in response to the urgent needs of refugees and asylum seekers in the Tees valley, the Mary Thompson Fund relies on the generous support of individuals and groups in the area. The work of the fund is carried out by volunteers.

Help is provided only when no other sources of assistance are available, and often to people who are at a critical point in their search for a safe place to live.

From the Mary Thompson Fund Newsletter:

Many people who have been refused asylum lose all their support and become destitute, even though they may still be trying to pursue a just outcome to their claim. Some are from site countries to which there is no safe route of return at the present time.

Many end up sleeping on the floors of friends willing to risk losing their own support by taking them in. At worst, they may be forced to live rough on the streets and in parks.