We create together a comfortable and welcoming space especially for people who are seeking asylum or are refugees. We offer friendship and support and respond quickly to immediate needs. Working together, we try to ensure that dignity is maintained, hope is not lost and justice is pursued.
Space4U is a drop-in facility especially for people seeking asylum and refugees. It is held in the Trinity Centre in Splott/Adamsdown. Space4U tries to lessen stress and anxiety by meeting basic needs where possible, providing light refreshments and recreational activities - e.g. table tennis and snooker, clothing, food and toiletries in emergencies, English teaching, use of computers and sessions particularly suited to children and families. Space4U offers help and information and is often able to signpost people where it cannot meet needs itself. It has good knowledge as well as links to other organisations and groups in the city. Space4U is facilitated by volunteers who come from various backgrounds, half of whom are asylum seekers and refugees themselves. It has no paid workers. It is supported by small contributions from faith groups and gifts in kind, as well as secured funding from grants and trusts. Between 100 and 150 people now come to Space4U each session. People coming to Space4U represent all faith groups and none, as well as countries and languages from all over the world.
When was Space4U started? Space4U started ten years ago. In July 2007 a small group of people who were asylum seekers and refugees met to chat together at Trinity Methodist Church with Rev Steven Hill who was the minister there, and Ruth O'Neill, a catholic sister working as a volunteer in Cardiff. Both were concerned about the situation of people who were asylum seekers in Cardiff and the lack of services for them. They were especially concerned that there was no place to gather and spend time except in their homes. Their homes were rooms in shared houses and a number of asylum seekers in Cardiff had been made destitute and had no place at all. Steven and Ruth, with the approval of the church at Trinity, agreed to meet weekly with the small group. Over the years the attendance has increased dramatically, the services offered expanded and Space4U is now a charity.