Students Cycle for Sanctuary.
STAR members Hannah, Luke and Tom celebrated the beginnings of the City of Sanctuary movement in Liverpool earlier this month with an awareness raising cycle from Liverpool to London, visiting different Cities of Sanctuary along the way, including Coventry and Oxford.
Along with fresh clothes, mars bars, and bananas, the group carried the Liverpool City of Sanctuary banner, and set off down South to tell everyone along the way about the movement, and to see what different groups were doing.
“What became clear”, said cyclist number three, “was the variety of ways in which City of Sanctuary is seen in different places, and how as a movement it fits the activities and shape of the community it’s a part of. Liverpool’s movement is very much about offering a unifying platform for the groups and people already making a difference for refugees in the community, and making that platform accessible so that anyone else can jump onboard and make a difference too. I look forward to visiting more cities in the future, and seeing the movement in its different forms”.
For cyclist number two, “it was great to experience something of what sanctuary should be. Our first night we were offered a bed, a hot meal, cold beer and hot tea by the wonderful Jo. The wonderful women at the Peace House in Coventry welcomed us with tea, sweet potato curry, and rice pudding, and we left Oxford with our third night of good sleep and a cooked breakfast in our bellies!”.
The cycle came a week before the start of Refugee Week in Liverpool, which saw Liverpool City of Sanctuary promoted at a series events put on by SOLA ARTS, Merseyside Refugee Support Network, Asylum Link Merseyside, the Red Cross, Sahir House, and many others, including day trips, a weeks worth of events at the bombed out church, a football tournament, and a final musical extravaganza at the Zanzibar.