Miriam works for Saheliya Play and Learn Centre in Glasgow, a project funded by Comic Relief. It’s not your average crèche. The childcare is free and enables black and minority ethnic women refugees and asylum seekers, who may be isolated of have little support, access Saheliya’s advocacy, education and training programmes.
‘’I love my job, it’s so fulfilling. I get to see the children grow from babies to five years old. It’s a very unique setting because we tend to deal with children who are coming from a trauma background, some are coming from war zones.
Having the childcare service is the backbone of this organisation because if we weren’t here none of the women could come and attend the classes or take part in anything. It opens up opportunities for them.
Once they’ve picked up some language skills they are able to go to college - for many women this would seem impossible. If you need help with your rights, the law they will assign you a case worker and support you in your journey.
Some women, they might be experiencing domestic violence, the husband might be trying to take the children. People need help to understand the rules and rights.
I came by myself to the UK in 2001. Until I heard of Saheliya I didn’t know where to go. I started off taking part in some of their programmes - I started achieving. It all added up. Then because I had a childcare qualification I volunteered here and did that until I was employed. This is my second year.