About Nesta

Nesta is an innovation foundation. For us, innovation means turning bold ideas into reality and changing lives for the better. We use our expertise, skills and funding in areas where there are big challenges facing society.

Started: December 2015
Website: www.refuweegee.co.uk
Twitter: @Refuweegee
Location: Glasgow

Refuweegee is a grassroots community project that ensures all refugees arriving in Glasgow are welcomed to the city in true Glaswegian, or ‘Weegee’, style.

Selina Hales was inspired by the unfolding migrant crisis and distressing footage from refugee camps to create community built welcome packs for every forcibly displaced ‘Refuweegee’ arriving in the city.

Each pack contains practical essentials including toiletries, Glasgow specific items like maps and Tunnocks teacakes but most creatively, a ‘letter fae a local’, a personal welcome letter from a member of the community. “Postcards, letters or post it notes, as long as the words are welcoming and kind. Help us to make sure that upon arrival in Glasgow people are left in no doubt as to their acceptance, their safety and their future.”

The impact speaks for itself. Residents and refugees alike have been touched by the human connection of the project and now volunteer for Refuweegee, organising supporting events and opening a drop-in centre for the newest members of the community.

Working alongside existing organisations has increased the reach of the project. Oxfam has chosen Refuweegee as a grassroots model for its upcoming international campaign concerning familial relocation. Refuweegee truly is a local charity with a global mission.