Project information

Voices in Refuge

Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Refugee Forum are setting up an interpreting project which will simultaneously improve the quality of service given to our clients and open up new opportunities for professional training and skilled employment to refugees.

It is hoped that the project will be ongoing

Charity information: Nottingham And Nottinghamshire Refugee Forum

Nottingham And Nottinghamshire Refugee Forum logo
  • Need


    NNRF spends a large amount of money on interpreting (financial year 2015-2016, £30,000) for telephone interpreting services. These services are often of poor quality, increasing stress levels for advisers and clients, and in the worst cases leading to inaccurate advice being given. Many statutory services do not provide interpreters at all, leading to people missing important appointments, with attendant consequences. There is also a real lack of skilled employment opportunities for refugees.


    Our interpreting project solves these problems by providing a highly skilled training for refugees and asylum seekers. This means that our clients will receive excellent interpreting services for all our projects. In addition this training will provide employment opportunities for refugees, and we hope in the long term to be able provide employment opportunities within NNRF.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To provide excellent interpreting services for clients of NNRF


    » An intensive ten day interpreting training specifically designed for refugees to work with refugees in a community setting.

    What success will look like

    Success will be monitored by feedback forms for the advisers and for the clients

    Aim 2

    To provide skilled, well paid employment opportunities for refugees


    » An intensive ten day interpreting training specifically designed for refugees to work with refugees in a community setting.
    » To provide volunteer experience for refugees in interpreting which will lead to better employment opportunities
    » Eventually we hope to have paid employment opportunities for refugees within NNRF and externally

    What success will look like

    Post training assessment forms

  • Impact


    We believe that good interpreting services will lead to clients having a better understanding of their circumstances and be able to make better informed choices.

    In addition training refugee community interpreters will not only give them the necessary skills to access employment opportunities, but help to give their community a stronger voice.

    This will be demonstrated through focus groups and individual interviews with clients and interpreters, and monitoring long term trends.


    1. We may lose interpreters whom we have trained to other organisation (e.g. Big Word)

    We will mitigate this by building a community sense in the short term, and by hopefully giving people employment on fair terms in the long term

    2. People applying for the programme who are inappropriate/not suitable

    We will mitigate this by having a strong application and interview process


    We report to many donors in many different ways and are happy to tailor requirements as necessary. We have strong monitoring and evaluation processes and use an electronic case management system as well as specially designed M&E tools. We also produce a written annual report.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £36,600

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      Amount Heading Description
      £22,600 Project administrator Contact point for booking interperters
      £5,000 Training Training cost for 2 X 25 interpreters
      £2,000 Room hire Room hire and food for two training sessions at ten days each
      £3,000 Volunteer expenses Expenses for volunteer interpreters for a year
      £2,000 Furnishings Furnishings and IT for the interpreting office
      £2,000 Office rental Rental for one year for an office for the project

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Nottingham City Council £5,000 Conditional
  • Background


    The project is located in Nottingham at the Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Refugee Forum. Nottingham has been a dispersal area for asylum seekers since 2000.

    Nottingham is a very multicultural city and NNRF is at the heart of that multiculturalism. NNRF is currently the lead organisation in the Communities of Identity grant from the City Council, and has strong links with all of the refugee community organisations.


    This project will benefit all asylum seekers and refugees in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. These people make up some of the most vulnerable people in our community at the moment.

    There are now over one thousand dispersal beds in Nottingham. Last year NNRF saw over 2500 individuals in a total of over 7000 visits. In addition NNRF has taken on the provision of casework for resettled Syrian Refugees.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    NNRF has a long history in Nottingham working with asylum seekers and refugees. It is the only organisation in the city carrying out this substantive work. We run an extensive variety of projects including legal, children's, housing, welfare benefits, and anti-destitution. We work in partnership with many organisations including the City Council, the British Red Cross and many others. We are working closely with other boroughs across the county through the implementation of the SVPR scheme.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Alice Johnson

    Alice Johnson runs the Cairo Community Interpreters Project and is working with us as a consultant to get the project set up

    Matt Bedford

    Matt Bedford has been volunteering with the project since its inception on administration

    Fiona Cameron

    Fiona Cameron is the manager at NNRF and has a strong commitment to improving the quality of advice services and empowering the local community.

    Many Interpreters

    Many interpreters desperately wish to improve the experience of their fellow countrymen within the UK, and share their experiences.