Schoolkids’ letters describe the perfect day out in Liverpool for refugees
8 months ago
A day out in Liverpool includes doughnuts in Liverpool ONE, mini golf at Otterspool and Crust pizza, according to the city’s ten year olds.
The pupils made the recommendations in letters written to refugee families welcoming them to the city.
Other highlights were Bold Street’s Cat Café, the soft play centre Fantasy Land, and the city’s two football stadiums – although one girl admitted she preferred cricket.
Junior culture vultures also praised the city’s museums, the Western Approaches bunker and the Tate Gallery, while one adventurous writer recommended a day trip to Llangollen to see the horse-drawn barges, adding: “Make sure to go to the Llangollen Oggie Shop.”
The letters were compiled by the Action Asylum project housed at Asylum Link Merseyside, working with two schools, The Beacon Church of England Primary and Bishop Martin Church of England Primary, as part of this year’s Refugee Week celebrations.
They were shared with refugees studying English at Asylum Link Merseyside, who have since written back, and whose messages have been read out in the classroom.
In their letters, the schoolchildren urge the new arrivals that “there is no need to be afraid” and tell them “you’ll never walk alone”.
One boy wrote:
“I understand you’ve been through a lot, but I assure you, you’re safe in Liverpool.
“We have lots of things to do and places to see. I recommend shopping at Liverpool ONE, they have the best doughnuts down there.”
Another wrote: “I love it here in Liverpool and I’m sure you will too. I understand you feel anxious but Liverpool makes me feel safe and I hope it will welcome you with open arms.”
Some of the children commented on their own experience of moving home and the warm welcome they received in Liverpool. One boy who described himself as a “half-refugee” from Hong Kong, wrote: “Some people have a Liverpool accent. But I can understand it, which means you can.”
While a girl wrote:
“One of my favourite things about Liverpool is how diverse it is. It’s full of amazing people that will accept you.”
And another wrote: “I just moved here two years ago. I found Liverpool so fun.”
Many kids also highlighted how kind and friendly people in Liverpool are.
Refugees are often forced to rebuild their lives from nothing, and the schoolkids were also full of tips for thrifty days out for those on a budget.
Free recommendations included the views from Everton Brow, the beaches at Crosby and New Brighton, and visiting the Liver Building and the Albert Docks.
Excerpts from the letters will be shared on social media using the hashtag #lettersfromliverpool.
One girl wrote:
“Here, anywhere you want to go, feel free! There’s lots of playgrounds with swings, slides and lots of fun!”
But another warned kids heading out to come prepared: “Some places in Liverpool are cash or card-only, so always take a bit of both just in case!”
Emma Leaper, from Action Asylum, who led on the project said:
“It was wonderful to get such a warm welcome from the young people on Merseyside for those new arrivals to the city. After having to leave everything familiar behind when they fled, refugees often can feel very disorientated here, so suggesting some fun and free activities for them to explore has been really helpful.”
Lorna Martin, a teacher at Bishop Martin Church of England Primary, said:
“The children really enjoyed learning more about what it means to be seeking asylum and writing letters welcoming people to Liverpool. We were delighted to receive replies in the post and we look forward to building more positive connections through Asylum Link Merseyside.”
Angela Ball, a teacher at The Beacon Church of England Primary, said:
“It is wonderful for the children of our school to recognise people less fortunate on a global scale and to exhibit their Christian values of ‘kindness’, ‘generosity’ and ‘respect’ towards refugees.”
Schoolkids on Liverpool’s top sights:
“Both very impressive buildings”
“Best Italian pizza in the UK”
“Full of restaurants, shops, game stores, a very unique mix of people and styles”
“They have the best doughnuts down there”
Museum of Liverpool
“There is so many fascinating things”