Charities and individuals pledge their support for Afghan refugees coming to Perth and Kinross in open letter

By Kathryn Anderson

A Perth and Kinross charity has teamed up with over 20 local groups and politicians to offer support to the council in welcoming Afghan refugees.

PKAVS has led a commitment by local groups to offer their support in providing a safe place for those fleeing the Taliban takeover.

Perth and Kinross Council hopes to welcome Afghan families and/or individuals in the next few weeks.

PKAVS sent a letter - signed by 24 local faith groups, community organisations and politicians - to council leader Murray Lyle saying: “Perth and Kinross stands ready to play our full part.”

At a special meeting of Perth and Kinross Council last Monday (August 30), councillors unanimously committed to offer support and assistance to 10 individuals or six households.

The commitment came following an agreement to support Afghan Locally Employed Staff (LES) and their families.

Conservative leader Murray Lyle pledged to offer “even more flexibility - if required - that we could be able to go beyond that point” in welcoming more individuals/families.

PKAVS’ open letter - signed by Jim Fairlie MSP, John Nicholson MP, faith groups, local charities and organisations - has asked PKC to

“commit to receiving a proportionate number of the Afghan refugees who are re-settled in Scotland in the coming months and years.”

The letter adds: “We, too, commit ourselves and our organisations to playing our part in providing a warm welcome, as well as ongoing support.”

The letter was sent following a PKAVS collection which received thousands of items for welcome packs for the small group of refugees arriving in the near future.

PKAVS has been overwhelmed by the “wonderful generosity” of the people of Perth and Kinross and announced today it is no longer able to accept any more items.

Partnership and communities manager Lori Hughes said: “Perth and Kinross has outdone itself this week.

“Between the people coming in to donate items, and the organisations signing up wholeheartedly to offer support in the future, it’s clear that Perth and Kinross wants to provide a warm welcome.

“When our new arrivals touch down, I hope the warmth, willingness and kindness we have seen this week will be demonstrated in other ways and opportunities too.”

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