Kingston Liberal Synagogue (KLS) hosted a discussion with Syrian refugees about their experiences settling in England on Saturday (June 15).

The event was organised by KLS and featured Marwa Belghazi as a guest speaker, the resettlement coordinator for Kingston Refugee Action (RAK). 

One of the refugees present was Journalist and Arabic Teacher Hasnaa Omar, who left Syria in 2013 and arrived in London in 2016.

KLS heard how Ms Omar volunteered in the community in Lambeth since arriving and how this helped her integration.

She was subsequently able to bring her husband, an IT Manager, to England.

The couple now have a son, George, who is 18 months’ old.

Describing her experiences of settling into the UK, Ms Omar explained how undertaking voluntary work on arrival was a good way for refugees like herself to learn English and improve their employment prospects.

Ms Belghazi meanwhile spoke about her role in helping refugees settle into the Borough by providing practical and cultural support.

Currently eleven families have been settled in Kingston, with a few more due to arrive shortly, she said.

Speaking after the service Ms Belghazi added: "It was so heartwarming to be invited into a Synagogue, and one which is so open to people of different cultures, and to see that the community is so welcoming.

"I look forward to working further with members of KLS in helping newly arrived families to settle into the area."

Since 2015, Kingston Council (RBK) have worked to help resettle 50 refugees from the Syrian Civil War in the borough.

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