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‘London Is Open’ at Chestnut Grove Academy, Balham

August 21, 2019

IRT was recently asked to speak at the ‘London Is Open’ event at the Chestnut Grove Academy in Balham, London, which was attended by 190 students from Year 7. The aim was to discuss the experiences of immigrants and refugees in order to help combat prejudice and discrimination. The event followed a ‘speed dating’ format, […]

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IRT was recently asked to speak at the ‘London Is Open’ event at the Chestnut Grove Academy in Balham, London, which was attended by 190 students from Year 7. The aim was to discuss the experiences of immigrants and refugees in order to help combat prejudice and discrimination. The event followed a ‘speed dating’ format, with the speakers sitting at individual tables and groups of around eight students rotating through for 15 minutes at a time. IRT’s CEO, Steve Smith, and Fundraising Manager, Jessica Eames, spoke to each group about the families that IRT supports overseas, telling stories of their plight in Uganda, South Sudan, Jordan and Tanzania.

Assistant Head, Jo Taylor-Campbell, who is also Head of Department Health, Philosophy, Beliefs and Ethics and Psychology, organised the event. She explained:

‘One of the greatest things about living in London is its diversity. However, not everybody is treated equally, and this is something that must be challenged. We take this task very seriously as a school and ensure that all teachers in all subjects address issues relating to equality and discrimination. We hope that this event will inspire students to take on their own forms of activism and help the vulnerable in society in whatever way they can.’

Several other charities and organisations also spoke at the event, including the Metropolitan Police and immigrants who had recently moved to the UK. The speakers discussed various topics, including the Windrush scandal and the recent spike in hate crimes against immigrants.

IRT’s Jessica Eames said of the event:

‘This is such a fantastic and unique way of educating students about the immigrant and refugee crisis in the world. I was so impressed with the Year 7 students at the Chestnut Academy who were completely engaged and genuinely interested in the subjects we spoke about, asking questions and taking notes as we spoke. The students were incredibly respectful, polite and welcoming to all of the speakers present, it was a real pleasure to spend the afternoon with them.’

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IRT would like to thank the teachers and the students at Chestnut Academy and congratulate them on the fantastic work they do.

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If you would like a member of IRT to talk at your school, please get in touch info@irt.org.uk


Fenwick Elliott holds charity football cup in aid of IRT

July 23, 2019

The Fenwick Elliott Charity Cup 2019 took place on Friday 5th July 2019 in aid of IRT, taking place at Powerleague in Shoreditch. The five-a-side tournament featured seven budding teams made up of the law firm’s clients. The event is a fantastic annual fundraising initiative by Fenwick Elliott LLP, a highly respected London based law […]

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The Fenwick Elliott Charity Cup 2019 took place on Friday 5th July 2019 in aid of IRT, taking place at Powerleague in Shoreditch. The five-a-side tournament featured seven budding teams made up of the law firm’s clients. The event is a fantastic annual fundraising initiative by Fenwick Elliott LLP, a highly respected London based law firm which specialises in construction and energy law.

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Photo: The tournament in full flow.


The day was a huge success, with teams paying an entry fee to enter and all the proceeds kindly being donated to IRT. Despite the fierce competition on the pitch, the teams were able to enjoy pizza together afterwards. They were all competing for the prized trophies which were presented to both the winners and runners up at the end of the tournament. Our CEO, Steve Smith MBE, gave a fascinating speech preceding the prizegiving outlining the incredible work IRT undertakes, rebuilding the lives of refugees overseas.

IRT’s trustee Robbie McCrea is a Senior Associate at Fenwick Elliott and we are thrilled that this connection led to IRT being placed at the heart of the charity cup. Fundraising events like these help IRT to help even more refugees whose lives have been torn apart by war and conflict.

WE WOULD THEREFORE LIKE TO GIVE A MASSIVE THANK YOU TO FENWICK ELLIOTT FOR PUTTING ON THIS WONDERFUL EVENT, THE PROCEEDS OF WHICH ARE REALLY GOING TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE TO OUR PROJECTS ABROAD. MR STEVEN SMITH MBE, CEO AT IRT.

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International Refugee Trust lifts Ugandan villages out of poverty

July 23, 2019

We are pleased to announce the completion of our very first StepUp project (StepUp 001) in northern Uganda. The project aims to enable impoverished farmers to become self-sufficient, improving their quality of life both financially as well as in strengthening community ties – AND IT WORKS! Please take a look at this fantastic video from […]

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We are pleased to announce the completion of our very first StepUp project (StepUp 001) in northern Uganda. The project aims to enable impoverished farmers to become self-sufficient, improving their quality of life both financially as well as in strengthening community ties – AND IT WORKS! Please take a look at this fantastic video from our partner (OCA) and some of the StepUp 001 families in Uganda.

We have a further 4 ongoing StepUp projects and expect them to do just as well as this one. If you would like to donate to the StepUp projects please visit our website https://www.irt.org.uk/donate – thank you.


Sir Terry Wogan’s interview with IRT’s founder Fr. Kevin Doheny

July 23, 2019

International Refugee Trust is proudly celebrating 30 years of supporting refugees overseas. IRT was founded by Father Kevin Doheny back in 1989 who worked tirelessly to help refugees all over the world. In 1989, Fr Doheny had already been an activist for refugees for 20 years, and was working hard to raise awareness of extreme […]

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International Refugee Trust is proudly celebrating 30 years of supporting refugees overseas. IRT was founded by Father Kevin Doheny back in 1989 who worked tirelessly to help refugees all over the world. In 1989, Fr Doheny had already been an activist for refugees for 20 years, and was working hard to raise awareness of extreme poverty in the world caused by war, conflict, persecution and famine.

In this interview from December 1990, Fr Doheny talks to the legendary Sir Terry Wogan about his life, his work with Mother Theresa and why he chose this vocation to help refugees around the world.

International Refugee Trust is still going strong, improving the lives of refugees, internally displaced people (IDP) and returnees around the world. IRT is there when the big agencies move on. Read more about IRT’s current projects.


Students Win place in ‘One World Challenge’ final with IRT

July 23, 2019

International Refugee Trust is proud to announce that a group of students from Ballerkermeen High School, Isle of Man, have been chosen to go through to the grand final of ‘One World Charity Challenge’. Year 12 students Siân Beale, Marie Tulbo, Carmela Pabellan, Jenny Hill and Aaron Kaneen, chose to represent IRT and gave an […]

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International Refugee Trust is proud to announce that a group of students from Ballerkermeen High School, Isle of Man, have been chosen to go through to the grand final of ‘One World Charity Challenge’. Year 12 students Siân Beale, Marie Tulbo, Carmela Pabellan, Jenny Hill and Aaron Kaneen, chose to represent IRT and gave an outstanding presentation about IRT’s work. All of their hard work paid off, and they won a place in the grand final on the 27th March 2019.

‘One World Charity Challenge’ is sponsored by AFD Software Ltd and coordinated by the One World Centre, Isle of Man. The Challenge sets out to give Year-12 students a greater understanding of the developing world through researching the work of a charity working overseas. Students, working in teams, are challenged to choose a charity working overseas, which is either Manx registered or a small UK based charity, then research the work and interview representatives of that charity. They must then create a 10-12 minute multi-media presentation which examines the effectiveness of their chosen charity, shows cultural understanding and looks at the impact the charity has had on someone’s life.

All finalists are guaranteed a grant of a minimum of £500 for their chosen charity, and the winning presentation at the grand final will win their chosen charity a whopping £3,500 grant.

WE AT IRT ARE DELIGHTED TO BE REPRESENTED BY SUCH A PASSIONATE AND TALENTED GROUP OF STUDENTS. THEIR COMMITMENT TO OUR CAUSE IS BOTH INSPIRING AND HEART-WARMING AND WE WISH THEM THE MOST EXTRAORDINARY GOOD LUCK AT THE ‘ONE WORLD CHARITY CHALLENGE’ FINAL ON 27TH MARCH.” – STEVE SMITH MBE – CEO AT IRT

For more information about the challenge, please visit the ‘One World Charity Challenge‘ website.

Charity Challenge update

Congratulations to our incredibly talented team from Ballerkermeen High School, Siân Beale, Marie Tulbo, Carmela Pabellan, Jenny Hill and Aaron Kaneen who came third in the One World Charity Challenge on 27th March 2019, and won IRT a £1,600 grant! The students also raised an additional £250 in fundraising. We are so very proud of them and thank them, and the One World charity for their incredible support.

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Registration now open!

July 23, 2019
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IRT work with ‘Monitor Man’

July 22, 2019

13/11/2018 Up and coming artist Yassine Khaled exhibited his recent work ‘Monitor Man’ at the Watermans Art Centre, Brentford last weekend. Yassine is a Moroccan born artist who travelled from Helsinki, briefly stopping in London on his way to Finland, especially to exhibit his new piece. In Monitor Man, Yassine Khaled creates an embodiment of […]

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13/11/2018

Up and coming artist Yassine Khaled exhibited his recent work ‘Monitor Man’ at the Watermans Art Centre, Brentford last weekend. Yassine is a Moroccan born artist who travelled from Helsinki, briefly stopping in London on his way to Finland, especially to exhibit his new piece.

In Monitor Man, Yassine Khaled creates an embodiment of virtual communication in the public space. The artist wears a helmet affixed with an iPad, which offers a real-time connection with a person outside of Europe and the Western world. Through technology and his own body, Khaled uses the performance to transgress actual national borders which separate people. The performance is an opportunity for people to meet with someone who is physically far away and restricted in their freedom of movement. Monitor Man was inspired by the current overseas refugee crisis and how it is unfolding in relation to the internet, social media, and the omnipresence of technology. The project began on the streets of Helsinki but is ongoing, as the artist continues to present the work in different locations around the Western world.

Yassine has asked, The International Refugee Trust, to include refugees and staff working on their projects in Uganda, Tanzania, South Sudan, and Jordan. The refugees and project staff have agreed to be part of his exhibition and they will have the opportunity to talk to members of the public all over the world, through Yassine’s Monitor Man helmet.

Jessica Eames, Fundraising Manager of IRT said: “We are so excited to be supporting the incredibly talented Yassine with his worldwide exhibition, and we’re so grateful for his help in raising awareness of the ongoing refugee crisis overseas.

His Monitor Man exhibition will mean the general public in the western world can talk directly to refugees overseas (and the humanitarians assisting them) helping them understand that the refugees we help are just regular people like you and me. Sadly, these refugees are caught up in war and conflict in their home countries, they need our help from the western world.”

Find out more about Yassine Khaled and his work.


Refugee charity visits the House of Lords

July 22, 2019

19/10/2018 In developing countries, more than 24,848 civilians were killed by explosive violence in 2017. Explosive violence is one of the main causes of the worldwide refugee crisis. Chiswick-based charity, International Refugee Trust (IRT) recently attended a meeting at The House of Lords with The All Party Parliamentary Group on Explosive Threats (APPG) to discuss […]

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19/10/2018

In developing countries, more than 24,848 civilians were killed by explosive violence in 2017. Explosive violence is one of the main causes of the worldwide refugee crisis.

Chiswick-based charity, International Refugee Trust (IRT) recently attended a meeting at The House of Lords with The All Party Parliamentary Group on Explosive Threats (APPG) to discuss the issue.

The APPG works with various charities and humanitarian organisations to determine how Parliament can help to reduce explosive violence in developing countries and support victims.

At the meeting, The APPG on Explosive Threats launched an awareness campaign to highlight its inquiry into assistance to victims of explosive violence. It has set up the REVIVE Campaign Ltd as a not-for-profit organisation to undertake its research, fundraising and activity management. ‘REVIVE’ stands for Reduce Explosive Violence Increase Victim Empowerment.

The fatalities recorded in 2017 showed a staggering increase of 175% compared to 2011, when the APPG was first created. The previous year, 2016, saw the highest number of annual recorded casualties since 1999 (9,228), the most child casualties ever recorded, and the highest number of annual casualties caused by improvised explosives.

Roger Mullin, former SNP MP and former chairman of the APPG, is to be REVIVE Campaign’s first Chair.

Speaking at the launch in the House of Lords, Mr Mullin said, ‘It is so important for REVIVE Campaign to work with the International Refugee Trust. The indiscriminate use of IEDs is often a major factor in people becoming refugees as they escape from the horrors of violence. But becoming a refugee is of course not an answer to the problems people face. They often carry serious physical and mental scars from being victims of violence, and this is an area of particular concern to REVIVE. Hopefully REVIVE and IRT will be effective partners in this great humanitarian cause.’

Steve Smith, CEO at IRT, said: ‘IRT is helping refugees overseas in numerous ways. Every day, we see the effects of explosive violence in developing countries. Landmines, shellfire, air-launched weapons, missiles and IEDs kill and disable indiscriminately, leaving tens of thousands in need of urgent medical care and prosthetic limbs. More work is required, not only to help victims, but also to raise awareness of this shocking humanitarian catastrophe.’

Jessica Eames, Fundraising Manager at IRT, added: ‘We are also working with the local community in Chiswick who are helping us to raise awareness and vital funds for our work. We are incredibly grateful to the Chiswick community. Without their support, we would not be able to continue our important work with refugees overseas.’