Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

Refugee children living in Bristol after arriving unaccompanied

The Jungle Camp in Calais. Credit: PA Images

ITV News can reveal more than 50 refugee children are living in Bristol after arriving in the city illegally.

They came to the city unaccompanied over recent months after spending years travelling from their war-torn homes in Syria and Iraq.

City council leaders say they aim to take in 25 refugee families every year for the next five years through the official resettlement programme.

Dr Loubaba Mamluk from Citizens UK Bristol said the children had varying needs around language and the trauma they had seen.

She said the council had offered some support but the government needed to do more for them.

Some refugee families have already arrived legally. Credit: ITV News

Some families have already made it safely and legally and are now settling into their new homes with much-needed peace and stability.

Their journey - like those of most refugees - has been long and painful, and many of them are not sure where their friends or family who also attempted the journey are or whether they are safe.

The civil war in Syria which they left behind has claimed the lives of 400,000 people.

Those who have arrived are being given shelter and support by the council. Credit: ITV News

Those who have arrived - one of them turning up on the steps of a local health centre - have been given shelter and support by the council.

Others have been helped by generous offers of shelter from people willing to give up their property.

Some refugees told ITV News the hospitality and sanctuary offered by Bristol had been life-saving.

They count themselves among the lucky ones, plucked from a life of danger and fear. Their relief, though, is tinged with anxiety for those they have left behind.