KRAFT’s (Kirklees Refugees and Friends Together) recent move to St Thomas’s Community Hall, Manchester Road, Huddersfield, coincided with seven years work delivering a holistic support to the refugees and asylum seekers of Kirklees and beyond.
The evening began at 6.00pm with the AGM, followed by a tour of the new centre. At the opening ceremony, Pam Bye, KRAFT’s Chair said -
“Over the past seven years we have battled constantly for survival. Loss of key funding in 2005-06 resulted in forfeiture of five paid posts and our prestigious home. We substantially downsized and with help moved into temporary premises. In April our lease expired and we faced homelessness. Thankfully, St Thomas’s Church came to our rescue and offered us a permanent home in their community hall. Due to the nature of our work KRAFT has frequently been subjected to extreme hostility and vilification from some quarters, but this has always been counterbalanced by the love and support we have received from others. It is only thanks to the selfless dedication of our volunteers and the generosity of our friends that we have managed to hold on and maintain a vital service to our 2000+ clients.
This evening we wish to celebrate this feeling of regeneration and spiritual renewal and show our gratitude to those who have funded and supported us over the years. Thanks to St Thomas’s Church, Longroyd Bridge we have a new home and appreciation to Kirklees LA for funding it. Thanks to Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust and Tudor Trust for funding paid posts. Especial thanks to the Angel Group who has funded running costs, no-strings, for almost seven years. There is no doubt that without the financial support of Angel we would not have survived.”
A rich multi-cultural mix of music, songs, readings, poetry, extreme martial arts, dancing and food followed. The festivities were enjoyed by an audience of more than 100 guests.
St Thomas’s Community Centre, Manchester Road, Huddersfield HD1 3HU
Tel: General Office: 01484 429695; Director: 01484 429639; Fax:01484 429635