The Catholic Archbishop of Liverpool, Malcolm McMahon, has declared open the new wing of a Medaille Trust safe house which will provide refuge for eight more victims of modern slavery.
The safe house in Merseyside is one of 10 Medaille Trust safe houses in the country. With the launch of eight new rooms, the house can now provide supported accommodation for 18 male survivors of modern slavery.
Unveiling a plaque to declare the new wing of the house open, the Archbishop prayed for the project to go from success to success and stressed the need for assistance to be provided to those who need help and support.
The new wing was part-funded by the Albert Gubay Charitable Foundation. Their representative was delighted to see the plans come to fruition and was impressed by the modern and functional facility, which will be conducive to the residents’ recovery as they begin to plan the next stage of their journey to increased freedom and independence.
Medaille’s Mersey Service Manager Naomi Mumba-Dobson said:
“The eight new beds will help us continue in our mission to provide accommodation and support to victims and survivors of modern slavery by giving people a lovely and warm place that they can use for their recovery and reflection period.”
In a message to guests, CEO of Medaille Trust Garry Smith said: “The number of victims of modern slavery is sadly growing significantly every year. Last year 129 men were referred to our survivor services in the North-West. We must continue to respond to this increase with much-needed support for those who escape and seek refuge and protection. The funding from the Albert Gubay Charitable Foundation, which we are very grateful for, has helped us with this response.”
One of the survivors of modern slavery related his experience coming to live at the Mersey safe house. He said: “I was really nervous when I arrived, but I was given a warm welcome, and from that day to this, my life has changed for the better. I have been shown kindness by every member of staff, and they helped me regain my confidence. I have been given access to various local services so I can build a promising future in front of me. I would like to thank all members of staff for the help and support they have given me.”
Medaille Trust is now trying to raise just over four hundred thousand pounds to further improve the Mersey safe house with a counselling room, a sports and recreation room, a multi-faith prayer room, and a training room, among other facilities. To donate please visit https://www.medaille-trust.org.uk/donate