After a talk at school about the refugee crisis, Edge Hill University student Daniel Chapman felt compelled to help those affected and promote a more positive image of asylum seekers.
18 year old Social Work student Daniel from the Wirral has helped with English and reading lessons, organised events and raised awareness among his peers through volunteering with Asylum Link Merseyside (ALM). He has now been rewarded with an Edge Hill Excellence Scholarship.
“I would go over every Tuesday morning to help out with English classes of around 40 people, with reading,” said Daniel. “As many asylum seekers are isolated, break time and lunch time were a great opportunity to get to know each other and support them with friendship. At school we also threw a Christmas party for over 70 asylum seekers from ALM.”
This invaluable experience inspired Daniel to want to do more, so he volunteered for Care4Calais during the summer and again in October.
“I’ve volunteered with Care4Calais twice now, and the experience has definitely been one of the best of my life,” said Daniel. “Mornings would be spent carrying out warehouse tasks and in the afternoons I was lucky enough to go in to camp to either run Art and English workshops, help with distribution, or go ticketing – the targeted system we used going from tent to tent giving people tickets for the aid they needed most.
“My second visit was slightly more sombre because it was during the week of demolition. This week involved giving the refugees as much information possible about what was happening, helping them queue to be registered and even staying overnight in camp for two nights watching over children who the authorities wouldn’t register who had no shelter.
“I’m proud to have been awarded the scholarship and so happy that, because of it, I will have the funds to carry on what I’ve enjoyed doing so much, and it will provide me with the opportunity to help more people.”
Daniel has a passion for helping others. As well as helping with the refugee crisis he is also active in his community, taking part in LoveWirral, a local outreach project for young people from deprived backgrounds, and he is also training to be a scout leader.
To find out more information about studying for a Social Work degree at Edge Hill, click here.