In August 2012, the Employability Forum published a report on children’s attitudes to refugees, based on research from Refugees into Schools.
The report’s key findings are:
- There is widespread confusion and misconception within the UK population about the numbers of refugees in the UK, their impact on services and the reasons for their arrival. This is reflected in the school population with many children believing that asylum seekers and refugees are illegal immigrants.
- The majority of schools requesting a visit from Refugees into Schools do so to increase an understanding of difference amongst their students.
- Through Refugees into Schools, the Employability Forum notes that approximately 70% of children state they knew little or nothing about refugees before our visit. This is broadly consistent whether or not there are asylum-seeking or refugee children in the school or the class.
- Contact does not have to be long-term to have a lasting impact on children’s views. One-off interventions that share first-hand experience, such as meeting with a refugee and being able to talk with them about their reasons for flight, have an overwhelmingly positive impact on attitudes and dispelling myths.
- Hearing an adult share their experiences of conflict and seeking sanctuary can empower refugee and asylum seeking children to be more open about their own experiences.
Click here for report (pdf)
Click here for the Employability Forum website