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The Chronicle of RAP

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 6:25 pm    Post subject: The Chronicle of RAP Reply with quote

RAP 1987-2007

Refugee Arrivals Project was set up in the late 80's by a coalition of RCOs (?) as a response to the lack of reception arrangements for asylum seekers arriving at Heathrow. The organisation maintained offices in the airport and provided accommodation and support.

RAP worked over a period that saw a sustained rise in refugee numbers and public awareness of the situation through the decade of the 90's, and then a drop in arrivals again as the UK government tightened visa restrictions on refugee producing countries and imposed new and increasingly bizarre and cruel legislation on immigrants every other year.

'Key statistics about asylum seeker arrivals in the UK'

RAP grew over the years and employed 100's of people as staff, volunteers, interpreters and greeted 1000's of clients from all over the world

RAP's strengths
    - unique organisation, pioneering work
    - dedication to clients
    - culture of refugee empowerment
    - committment to equal opportunities and a diverse team
    - located at world's busiest airport

RAP quit the reception centre at thorncliffe in '06?
RAP closed it's doors in 2007. 2 teams joined with RC and are based in Hounslow.

My Experience
I started working at RAP in 1995 as a student, and have very sweet memories of my first year working as community support worker with newly arrived clients around london. The role of welcoming people to uk was a great privilege and was at the heart of RAP's mission.
That year was an education to me in the hidden world of the immigration system, and RAP colleagues supported me and treated me as a member of the RAP family. My image of RAP as a band of ninja activists in the tunnels of heathrow was not exactly correct, but we were a small team of hard-working and exceptionally dedicated people with whom i spent 5 inspiring years.

research project
    - tell the story of RAP, recognise, acknowledge and celebrate RAP’s achievements
    - establish RAP archive?
    - conserve RAP legacy
    - document & gain insight into an important period in the history of asylum in UK
    - present positive images of RAP to help overcome the traumatic experiences of those affected by the closure of the organisation
    - Investigate the impact of RAP observer function at LHR
    - Gather Learning points from history of RAP

possible methodologies:
    - Collect RAP information; Annual Reviews, Photos, Reports, Minutes & other documentation
    - Contact former RAP workers, clients and other stakeholders & encourage contributions of experiences, memories, testimonies & stories
    - Interview former RAP staff and clients
    - Record and share findings on RS forum & encourage participation from former RAP staff and clients

Literature Review
People !

last edited: 19/04/2008, 04/07/2008. 28/07/08,10/7/09

Memorandum of Understanding.doc
RAP MoU 1998/9

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RAP Annual Report 2003

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RAP Annual Report 2004

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RAP Annual Report 2005

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Joined: 05 Apr 2006
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2019 10:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

1987 Community organisations express concern that new asylum seekers are particularly vulnerable at ports of entry, and may suffer through discrimination and lack of specialist service provision. Sandy Buchan carries out research for Refugee Action. London Boroughs Grants Scheme Refugee Working Party gets closely involved.

1988 Steering Committee formed, made up of representatives of community organisations and refugee agencies. Director and two staff appointed. RAP based at Refugee Action offices, London.

1989 RAP starts receiving clients and moves office to Heathrow. Quickly expands because of large number of referrals from Immigration Service.

1990 Home Office provides significant increase in funding. 7 Project Workers handle a caseload of 5,164 clients.

1993 RAP opens additional office near Heathrow.

1997 RAP moves to larger office in Hounslow, and moves new offices to Heathrow.

1998 RAP has 16 full-time staff: 7.5 Project Workers handle a caseload of 9,049 clients.

1999 Steep increase in the number of newly-arrived asylum seekers referred to RAP by the Immigration Service. Amigos project up and running.

2000 A year of change and development for RAP. From April we expect to receive many more referrals in light of the recent changes in asylum procedures. More staff are recruited.

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