The group of Afghans that arrived in Exeter in the autumn has been welcomed to use the Wesley Room space at the Mint on a regular weekly basis for socialising and conversation.  This makes a welcome change from their rooms in the Southgate Hotel.  Several volunteers from the Mint church meet with them regularly and encourage them to chat and improve their understanding and speaking of English.  Laughter sometimes accomplishes more than words!

The group remain amazingly cheerful considering how long most are waiting to be housed.  Recent appeals to the Mint people and other local churches has brought an amazing response in provision of household items and these items have been welcomed.  Bikes, which can be used to get to work for those who have found employment are greatly appreciated.  Parents with very young children have been invited to Mini mints playtime on a Friday morning.

The problem remains that, until they are housed, there is no space to store items and although the children are in school the families cannot move on – they may also be sent to accommodation miles away from Exeter and their group of friends and compatriots.