Change the lives of asylum-seeking children in the UK

by Leave to Remain CIC

About the project


Tipping Point £15,000
A Star is Born (and educated) £30,000
Lights, camera, call to action! £45,000
tipping point
In-kind donations range from drinks to office supplies. We even accept homemade cakes. See what else we need!
tipping point
25 hrs
In-kind donations range from drinks to office supplies. We even accept homemade cakes. See what else we need!

More about the project

What is the social/environmental problem/issue that this project will address?
- The Home Office, Media and public at-large tend to treat separated children (or Unaccompanied Asylum Seekers) with suspicion and disbelief. - Most Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children suffer social, emotional and psychological trauma because of what they have experienced. We’d like this to be recognised officially. - There are many cases of Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children having their ages disputed – if considered to be older than 18-years old this minimises the responsibility of the local authority. We call for a holistic approach to assessing the ages. - We believe many issues will be solved (including Age Assessment) if a child is assigned a Guardian to support them through the entire asylum process. - Asylum appeals can take a matter of years causing further anxiety to Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children. We would call for a more timely process to be implemented. - Threat of removal for those reaching age 18 is wrong and should be in line with Section 21 of the Children’s Act. - We call for all Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children to have access to jobs and higher education currently disallowed. - We call for more legal aid and adequate representation through the appeals process.
Can you give us some statistics on this problem?
In 2008, there were an estimated 5,500 Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children seeking asylum and being cared for by local authority. In 2008, only 10% of Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children were granted refugee status on arrival and only 1% granted humanitarian protection. The remainder are forced into an untimely appeals process. Of 165 age-disputed cases dealt with at Oakington Removal Centre in 2005, more than 50% were found to be children.
What is your solution?
To create a cultural shift in the perceptions of this group and separate them from the main asylum debates so they are treated as children first. We ask that the Government appoints a ‘guardian’ for all separated children (including age-disputed) to help them during the process. This is a solution that has been well-researched by refugee sector organisations and called for by many others including the Refugee Children’s Consortium (which represents over 25 refugee and children’s organisations) and the Children’s Commissioner for England. A ‘guardian’ will support the child through the immigration process and help them navigate the complicated social, legal and welfare systems as well as offer independent advice and basic support which will help the child adjust to life in the UK.
How will you deliver this?
A 90-minute feature film as a way of mobilising public opinion. Launch a campaign for change. Expand our educational programme nationwide.

Get involved

Here are some great ways to get involved with the project and help out. If you have...
  • 2 minutes
    Suggest us to your friends on Facebook:
  • 5 minutes
    Ask friends and family to sign up to the newsletter.
  • 15 minutes
    Go to the Simple Acts campaign website:
  • 30 minutes
    Watch the short films made by graduates of our training courses on our website:
  • A few hours
    Visit our partner websites and write a blog and/or letter to your MP.
  • Regular time commitment
    We want to mobilise journalists, bloggers, animators, designers, campaigners, fundraisers, administrators – if you can volunteer your services on a regular basis then we could do with your help!

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Opinions and comments mentioned on the FundIt.Buzz website are the personal views of individual contributors. FundIt.Buzz takes no responsibility for these views. However if you find something that you think does not meet our guidelines you can report it to
franny 18 January 2011 - 21:07

I came to the screening of your summer school's films with my niece (aged 12) and we were both blown away by the whole Leave To Remain project. You rock! Very happy to support you with 100 quid - and happy to give more as the film progresses. Good luck, Franny

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About the organisation

Vision and mission

Our mission is to change the culture of disbelief in the Home Office and parts of the media in their regard to and treatment of, unaccompanied asylum seeking children. Through the production of a commercially viable feature film we aim to bring the little-known experiences of this group into the public consciousness. The film will inspire the public to bring about a social and political change which will be facilitated by a campaign supported by members of the Refugee Children’s Consortium. The campaigning arm will further support educational film making workshops for unaccompanied asylum seeking children across the UK.

Geographical coverage


Our track record

Bruce Goodison (Leave to Remain Writer/Director) was involved in The Age of Stupid, a film which redefined the idea of socially engaged filmmaking in the 21st century. Beyond his strong commitment to making compelling films that mobilise public opinion, he has a track record of making acclaimed documentary and drama, having won almost every award going. His drama-documentary, ‘FLIGHT 93: The Flight that Fought Back’, was nominated for an Emmy for the Best TV movie. ‘Our War’ won best factual series at the 2012 BAFTA’s. ‘SAS: Iranian Embassy Siege’ won the Grierson Award for the Best Historical Documentary in 2003. The Executive Producer of the film is Pippa Cross; an award winning indie film and TV Producer who sat on the Board of Directors of UK Film Council, now the BFI. With over twenty years of experience, Pippa’s credits include acclaimed films such as ‘My Left Foot’, ‘Bloody Sunday’ and ‘Shooting Dogs’ – the highly acclaimed film about the Rwandan Genocide. Producers James Levison & Kate Cook are both well recognised for making excellent documentaries & high profile political dramas.

Who do we help?

Existing Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children in the UK and new arrivals as well as the NGOs and faith groups that support them.

How do we deliver this?

We will deliver: A 90-minute feature film : Leave to Remain film. A 2-year campaign: Leave to Remain Action Campaign. A 2-year educational programme: Leave to Remain Training Academy.

Awards And Recognitions

Bruce Goodison As Director / Executive Producer (Winner of two Gierson Awards, BAFTA nominee, RTS winner and Emmy nominee): 'The Age of Stupid' Winner of Best Green Doc / '10 Days to War' Winner of Best Production and Best TV Movie, Rome Fiction Fest 2008 / 'Flight 93: Flight that fought back' Emmy nominated for Best TV Movie / ‘SAS: Iranian Embassy Siege’ BAFTA and Grierson winner. Kate Cook As Production Manager/Line Producer: '10 Days to War' Winner of Best Production and Best TV Movie, Rome Fiction Fest 2008 / 'The Blood of the Rose' Sheffield Documentary Film Festival Green Winner and Grierson nominated. James Levison As Production Associate: ‘Endgame’ Winner of a Peabody Award, Emmy and Golden Globe nominated.