The Church has a unique opportunity to welcome Afghans arriving to the UK and London - to offer practical help and more importantly a warm welcome into our church communities! Join us at our webinar on 18th November - Welcoming Afghans to London – Your church can make a difference.
Below are some different ways for churches to get involved:
JOIN: Join the Welcome Churches Network of churches welcoming Afghans and other refugees so that you can access resources and training for welcoming refugees. Joining the Network also helps those looking to get a welcome to find you. If there are Afghan families in a hotel near you or moving into your area, this will help Welcome Churches know that you are there. It's FREE to join! Please do not turn up at hotels uninvited or collect clothing or other donations. If there is a hotel in your area, try and find out who is coordinating the support. You can then ask Welcome Churches to help you join in and offer support as a church.
PRACTICAL DONATIONS - You can give items needed by Afghans via the Baby Basics UK Wishlist here or on amazon. You can also make practical donations via emergency appeals in your local area. Councils already participating in the Afghan Citizen’s Resettlement Scheme and looking for help in the Greater London are Camden, Ealing, Hackney, Hammersmith and Fulham, Kingston upon Thames, Lambeth and Lewisham.
LONG TERM HOUSING - If you are able to offer a property to your local authority for use by Afghan refugees, please visit here to find out more about providing long term accommodation.
BEFRIEND: Get to know the Afghans in your local area, show them around, practice hospitality and help them find a place to call home. Offering English classes is a great way to serve those arriving in the UK (the telling and re-telling of Bible stories can be a good way to help people practise English). Welcome and integrate Afghans into church life, offer prayer and look for opportunities to share about your Christian faith, being mindful of their vulnerable state. See the LCM Refugee booklet for more ideas.
We would also like to signpost you to further information on ways you can join in, pray and give:
The mountains melt like wax before the Lord, Before the Lord of all the earth. Psalm 97:5
Please join us in praying for the people of Afghanistan:
- Pray for Christians in Afghanistan: That the small numbers of believers would be empowered and strengthened by the Spirit to remain faithful in the midst of conflict and heavy persecution. Pray for an outpouring of wisdom and peace to navigate the evolving complexities that they face.
- Pray for those trying to leave/who have left Afghanistan: Pray for the provision of peace, safety and protection, especially as many have been separated from their families.
- Pray for women and children: The oppressive Taliban rule will strip women of their rights to freedom and education, impacting generations to come. Women and children are also likely to be exploited as wives for Taliban fighters.
- Pray for those supporting: Please pray for the governments, churches and organisations who are looking to support those affected by the crisis. Pray that God's wisdom would guide them and that resources would be used well to impact those who need it.
- Pray for Good to come from evil: As Joseph said to his brothers, 'You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good…' (Gen 50:20). Pray that we would not lose heart, but instead pray that God would be working out his purposes and use this crisis for the saving of many lives.