Manchester City of Sanctuary is a charity based in Manchester, offering support and advice for refugees and those seeking asylum. We exist to create a more inclusive and welcoming city to those seeking sanctuary in Manchester who bring skills, enterprise, music, food and hard work to enrich our city. We provide monthly conversational sessions to share advice about local services such as art galleries and libraries and help connect refugees and asylum seekers with others to make friends. We also support and signpost English classes, full courses and informal learning opportunities for beginners in our city.

Thanks to the support of Co-op Members through the Local Community Fund, we are now able to provide our own English lessons for the refugees and destitute asylum seekers who attend our sessions.

Without the support of funds like the Co-op’s Local Community Fund, we wouldn’t be able to help as many vulnerable members of our community. People who seek sanctuary, fleeing war and persecution are looking for mercy, safety and a place to contribute to. Our local cause can be that safe place. We are all about friendship and fun but most importantly we try to break isolation because refugees are here on their own. They don’t have any friends, they don’t have any family and our group become their family.

Our partnership with Co-op is a fantastic one because we share common values in that we both believe in building strong communities. The fact that Co-op Members have helped raise 19 million for local causes like ours, by buying selected Co-op branded products and services* is amazing!

Choose your Co-op local cause

If you’re a Co-op Member be sure to choose your local cause to make a difference to causes like ours. As a member, when you buy selected Co-op branded products and services 1% goes to local causes in your community, and you also get 5% back on your Membership card to spend in store*.

Manchester City of Sanctuary

Read more on local communities at our Co-op;

*Members earn 5% + 1% when they buy selected Co-op branded products and services from selected Co-op Group businesses. 5% to spend on future purchases. 1% goes to local causes.  Offer not available in independent societies including Midcounties, Central England, Southern or Chelmsford Star co-operatives or in the stores of affiliated retailers (such as NISA or Costcutter) that do not operate under the Co-op brand. Exclusions and restrictions apply. See Membership T&Cs at

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Communities locally in the UK, Local causes, Local Community Fund