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We suggest taking at least a whole year to work towards becoming an FE College of Sanctuary. This will help ensure this is a reflective, intentional and collaborative process and the Sanctuary values are wholly understood and embedded.

STEP ONE – Sign the organisational pledge, committing the college to acknowledge and support the CoS charter & organisational values and upholding our vision of welcome and belonging in the UK. This takes less than two minutes and is one of the minimum criteria.

Share your pledge and announce your intention to your wider college community.

STEP TWO – You will be contacted by the FE Colleges of Sanctuary Lead to learn about possible timeframes for your award, next steps and details of the support we can offer. Please note that with limited capacity we are only able to manage one cohort of applications per year. If there is a delay, we encourage you to engage with the network in the meantime by attending our events, using the newsletter and connecting with other colleges in the network – this will strengthen your application when the time comes.

STEP THREE – Read and review the College of Sanctuary resource pack, noting the the minimum criteria and the Colleges of Sanctuary website for ideas and inspiration. Undertake an audit of what the college has done to date to meet the award minimum criteria.

Consider who in your college may be seeking sanctuary, what support they may need and how to include them in the process, as well as reflecting on how your curriculum planning & college-wide events could be adapted to include learning about sanctuary. Learn about barriers to accessing further education for people seeking sanctuary and look at ways you can help overcome them. Create a plan to fulfil outstanding criteria and consider linking this to the college development plan.

Make sure to sign up to the FE College of Sanctuary Newsletter to keep posted about news, the latest resources and trainings and more.

STEP FOUR – Complete an application form that clearly states how you have fulfilled the the award minimum criteria. This should be accompanied with an evidence portfolio/ folder supporting your application and might include photos, newsletters, students’ work, emails, policies and more.

Discuss with the FE College of Sanctuary Lead about a realistic and convenient application submission deadline plenty of time in advance. When ready, submit your application to your Lead/contact who will arrange for a panel to review your application and share some feedback. This will be followed by an appraisal meeting. Please note that the appraisal team typically includes people from local refugee organisations, people with lived experience and/or others working within this space and is intended to understand local perspectives of your colleges support to people seeking safety.

Make sure City of Sanctuary UK is set up as a supplier to enable the transfer of the accreditation fee upon being informed about a successful award. Contact the Colleges Lead for details on how to transfer this fee.

STEP FIVE – Once informed about your successful award, transfer the award fee. As soon as this has been received you can announce your award and plan a celebration in collaboration with your local group and/or Lead. Make sure to share your achievements on social media and on the college website and reach out to local press. Continue to implement your sanctuary efforts and develop a plan for re-appraisal in three years.

Application Deadlines

Details of the 2024/25 academic year deadlines are pending. Please sign up to the newsletter to be notified.

Unfortunately, due to very limited capacity we are unable to accept applications outside the outlines timeframes.