Case Study – Romy’s Story
I was a teacher for 25 years and have worked with hundreds of children and young people. What inspired me to change direction and work at the Welsh Refugee Council was seeing the media images of children from war zones. Their parents were facing an impossible choice: to risk staying in their country of origin where their children’s lives were in danger or to make a potentially lethal journey to escape. It horrifies me that the policies of European countries make it hard to enter safely and legally.
I decided I wanted to play a part in making Wales a Nation of Sanctuary and Cardiff a City of Sanctuary, so I applied to volunteer part-time at Welsh Refugee Council alongside my work as a writer and teacher. From the start, I loved the warmth and diversity of the Welsh Refugee Council family. When a vacancy came up to work full-time, I made the leap and never looked back. As Triage Screener Receptionist, I meet everyone who comes into the Cardiff office. On our busiest day this year we saw 42 asylum seekers and refugees in addition to a full ESOL class. Each client has their own unique story, so I am always learning. Triaging means prioritising and that isn’t easy with so many clients needing help, but we are flexible, and we do whatever we can. Every day is different, and I love that.