Street Legal Support Volunteer – London

Last updated May 17, 2017London

Do you want to support a leading UK refugee charity, helping refugees, migrants and asylum seekers to build new lives?

We are there throughout the difficult and complex asylum journey. By empowering people through information and advice we help them to make the right decisions about their future. We won’t stop until there is an asylum system which treats everyone fairly, respects people’s human rights and leaves no one destitute.

About Street Legal

Street Legal provides immigration advice and support to homeless migrants from outside the EU who are rough sleeping or at risk of homelessness. The project is a partnership between Refugee Action, Praxis Community Projects and St Mungo’s, and takes a joint-casework approach that is tailored and responsive to the individual situations of the clients it supports.

What is the role?

The role is part of a project team that includes street outreach workers and an immigration advisor. The members of the team work closely together to ensure vulnerable homeless migrants are provided with advice, healthcare and housing, helping them off the streets and into support. The volunteer will work closely with Refugee Action’s immigration advisor, supporting aspects of the legal advice work with this client group

What is the time commitment?

You’ll need to be available to complete some initial training sessions.

We’d reasonably expect you to commit to a full day or two half days a week.

Refugee Action Volunteers ideally commit to the service for at least 6 months.

We expect commitment, punctuality and reliability from all of our volunteers.

Will I receive training and support?

All Street Legal volunteers will receive:

  • Refugee Action induction and a number of training sessions.
  • On-going support.
  • Assistance and training to gain OISC level 1 accreditation.
  • Opportunity to apply for OISC level 2 with self-study.
  • Legal supervision from an OISC level 3 adviser.
  • In addition to RA training volunteers may be able to access some training and skill shares through the St Mungo’s training programme.
  • Reasonable expenses to cover travel and lunch.

Where would I be based?

This role will be based at Refugee Action’s London Victoria Office or the London Bethnal Green Praxis Community Project office.

What are the main duties?

  • With the immigration advisor, meeting with clients to help establish their status and immigration histories.
  • Liaising with previous representatives, support agencies and the Home Office to request files and other information.
  • Carrying out research on country of origin and other matters for the immigration advisor.
  • Briefing the immigration advisor on the contents of Home Office and previous representative’s files to prepare reports/ summaries.
  • Taking instructions from clients for use in witness statements.
  • Liaising with the client and previous legal representatives.
  • Assisting clients with support issues e.g. drafting responses to the Home Office where there has been a change in a client’s circumstances.
  • Completing application forms for support and signposting and referral to partner organisations’.

What skills are we looking for?

The minimum skills, qualities and abilities we are looking for are:

  • Understanding of and commitment to the needs of asylum seekers, refugees and those without legal status in the UK (irregular migrants) and displaced peoples.
  • Understanding of cultural diversity and good team work.
  • Understanding and commitment to confidentiality and impartiality.
  • Some understanding of how the asylum system and asylum support works.
  • Knowledge of the issues facing homeless/destitute people.
  • Legal qualification or current law student would be advantageous.
  • Good research and analytical skills.
  • Ability to understand and summarise complex information and legal documents.
  • Good written and verbal English to communicate effectively with project staff and external stakeholders.
  • Ability to work with interpreters.
  • Basic IT skills.
  • Ability to record work with clients on paper and electronic files.

We ask for 2 references from all our volunteers and this role also requires a standard DBS check (Refugee Action will support you to apply for this).

How do I apply?

To apply, click Enquire Now to fill in the online application form.

Please highlight how you meet the above skills criteria.

We are committed to making every reasonable adjustment to the workplace or working arrangements so as to accommodate people with disabilities.