Eastbourne welcomes first family of Syrian refugees

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Eastbourne is set to welcome its first family of Syrian refugees in January following a Government pledge to resettle those fleeing war zones.

Eastbourne Borough Council says it plans to resettle a total of 40 people in the area over the next five years as part of a pledge that the UK would welcome 20,000 refugees from camps on the borders of Syria.

A spokesperson for Eastbourne Borough Council said: “We have been working closely with the other borough and district councils in East Sussex to support the resettlement of vulnerable Syrian families who have fled war zones.

“In Eastbourne, the first family from Syria is arriving here in January as part of our agreement to resettle 40 people by 2020 under the Syrian Vulnerable Persons Relocation Scheme (SVPRS). This was initiated after the government last year announced that 20,000 Syrian refugees would be resettled in the UK during this Parliament.”

Lewes, Wealden and Rother councils have also each agreed to resettle 40 people while Hastings Borough Council has pledged to resettle 100 people over the next five years.

The councils say they've been working closely on the plans with a range of key partners including health, education and voluntary services as well as community groups like the East Sussex Syrian Resettlement Programme.

Since November 22 people, including grandparents and children, have been resettled in East Sussex with a further 22 people coming to the county in January.

East Sussex Community and Faith Action (ESCAFA) for Vulnerable Syrian Families have been working with councils to bring together individuals and community and faith groups across East Sussex who are interested in supporting the families coming into the area.

For more information about ESCAFA visit www.escafa.co.uk.

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