Somerset refugee features in TV Christmas Show

A Syrian refugee supported by Taunton based charity CHARIS refugees features in the Christmas edition of the BBC’s Countryfile programme.

Abdullah Al Boukan came to Somerset with his family in 2017 as part of the UK government’s Community Sponsorship Scheme.  The programme shows the former Syrian olive grower working at Coates English Willow in Stoke St Gregory where he has been employed for more than two years. In the programme he talks with reporter Tom Heap about the bombing of his village and the support and kindness his family has received since arriving here in Somerset.

CHARIS’s Gordon East, says: “We are absolutely delighted at how things have turned out for Abdullah and his family.  CHARIS has directly sponsored 5 families to date and we have now expanded the work of our charity to provide support for community groups and refugee families across the South West.” 

Through Community Sponsorship, groups support the refugee families to become self-sufficient members of their new community.  They provide a welcome, friendship and advice as they settle into their new lives.  The role includes sourcing suitable housing, helping with learning English and education and finding employment.