Michal is a polish national who came to the UK in January 2019 with the hope of finding a better life. He arrived with 1200.00 euros and through his connections found accommodation. Michal has been struggling since then to navigate his way in the Barnsley in terms of integration (work, welfare, GP registration, learning English etc.)
He was referred to Migrant Action in March 2019 and he attended our drop-in in Barnsley having been threatened with eviction owing £440.00 in rent arrears, had no job but had received an offer from ASOS on condition that he had a bank account with specific banks. He couldn’t apply for universal credit due to not meeting the criteria for EU migrants applying for welfare and he was also expressing signs of mental and physical distress. His English language was minimal which constituted an added significant barrier.
After supporting Michal for over a month, he has now successfully applied for benefits, opened a bank account and secured a job with ASOS which starts in April. We also helped to prevent him being made homeless and criminalised which would damaged his integration prospects and possibly affected his physical and mental health. Migrant Action is also working with local partners to help Michal access English language ESOL and conversational classes to improve his language and communication ability. Michal is very pleased with the support and sent us this feedback.
‘Tomorrow, I probably start work in asos or on Friday at the company shop, after paying me out I want to give you £ 10 for Leeds mr. Fidelis.repay in free time.’Thank you for your help and support, and I will certainly find time to meet you. I now have my My aspirations for the UK are:job,transfer of driving license from Polish to English, Acquiring premises for renovation,Improving qualifications in IT,Mastering English to perfection, Obtaining UK citizenship in the future’
This case study captures the essence of Migrant Action’s existence and purpose. Within Michal’s story are the stories and experiences of many migrants who seek our support. As an organisation we continue to ensure that people are not trapped in vulnerability, rather they are empowered to realise their hopes, aspirations and full potential.