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Friendship
and Support in
Yarl's Wood & Beyond
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Beyond Detention (formerly Yarl’s Wood Befrienders) provides emotional and practical support to people detained in Yarl’s Wood IRC and post-detention, in the community.
"I am so grateful for the support. You are helping me to make the world see who I really am."
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Beyond Detention (formerly Yarl’s Wood Befrienders) aims to provide emotional and practical support to people detained in Yarl’s Wood IRC and in the community, post-detention.
White speech bubble.
Beyond Detention (formerly Yarl’s Wood Befrienders) provides emotional and practical support to people detained in Yarl’s Wood IRC and post-detention, in the community.

Immigration detention

Immigration detention is used by governments as part of their administrative process when deciding a person’s migration status.

Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre is one of 7 immigration removal centres in the UK. Despite Home Office insistence that these centres are not prisons, they look and feel like prisons, people feel criminalised and are deprived of their liberty. We are the only country in Europe to detain indefinitely.

Under international law, immigration detention is only meant to be used as a last resort, after all other alternatives have been exhausted. And yet we regularly see people who are arbitrarily detained in Yarl’s Wood, sometimes on multiple occasions. Around 60 per cent of people are released back into the community, with no further clarity on their migration status and having cost the tax payer £99 for every day they have spent there.

Indefinite detention has a well-documented, lifelong impact on physical and mental health. Rates of self-harm and suicide attempts are high. Vulnerable people, including survivors of torture, trafficking and abuse, are often detained, against the Home Office’s own guidance.

Beyond Detention calls for an end to the inhumane practice of indefinite immigration detention.
Post-detention, we offer phone befriending, online courses and referrals to specialist organisations.
Yarl's Wood Befrienders Home Banner
Friendship
and Support in
Yarl's Wood & Beyond
Orange origami bird logo.
Beyond Detention (formerly Yarl’s Wood Befrienders) aims to provide emotional and practical support to people detained in Yarl’s Wood IRC and in the community, post-detention.
"Pithy quote from a someone that has been detained"
black play buttonWhite speech bubble.
Beyond Detention (formerly Yarl’s Wood Befrienders) aims to provide emotional and practical support to people detained in Yarl’s Wood IRC and in the community, post-detention.
White speech bubble.

Immigration Detention

Immigration detention is used by governments as part of their administrative process when deciding a person’s migration status.

Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre is one of 7 immigration removal centres in the UK. Despite Home Office insistence that these centres are not prisons, they look and feel like prisons, people feel criminalised and are deprived of their liberty. We are the only country in Europe to detain indefinitely.

Under international law, immigration detention is only meant to be used as a last resort, after all other alternatives have been exhausted. And yet we regularly see people who are arbitrarily detained in Yarl’s Wood, sometimes on multiple occasions. Around 60 per cent of people are released back into the community, with no further clarity on their migration status and having cost the tax payer £99 for every day they have spent there.

Indefinite detention has a well-documented, lifelong impact on physical and mental health. Rates of self-harm and suicide attempts are high. Vulnerable people, including survivors of torture, trafficking and abuse, are often detained, against the Home Office’s own guidance.

Beyond Detention calls for an end to the inhumane practice of indefinite immigration detention.
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In Yarl's Wood
Find out more
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Post-Detention
Find out more
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“I had the opportunity to meet so many wonderful people there, like you from Befrienders, Kaleidoscope, Hibiscus, all wonderful. I grew as a person. I realised that there are still so many good and kind people in the world, and that you can turn any bad situation into a good one. I was full of hope when I left there.”

Get Involved

We could not do the work we do without our team of dedicated volunteers. Visits can be a lifeline for people in detention.
Yarl's Wood group team photo
There are many ways to support our work to counter the impact of detention. Would you like to volunteer? Raise awareness? Help us financially?
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Raise
awareness
Make a
donation
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“I feel hugely privileged to be associated with the befrienders. You are all so kind and wonderful.”

Resources

We work with a range of organisations that aim to counter the hostile immigration environment. We can put you in touch with many sources of help, including partners that provide support in other detention centres.
Sign-posting.
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“Even a strong woman needs a shoulder to lean on, someone who’ll just listen as tears roll down to her face, and remind her that no matter how far she’s fallen, she’ll get up, stronger and wiser than before”

Funding

We can only do what we do because of the generosity of our funders and people like you: people who care that women and men are being detained indefinitely in Yarl’s Wood IRC. A heartfelt thank you to our funders of the past three years:
Sam and Bella Sebba
National Lottery
Harpur Trust
The Bromley Trust
House Of Industry
Gale Family Trust
Lloyds Foundation

Our Story

Since 2001, when Yarl’s Wood IRC first opened, we have been offering hope to people in detention through friendship and practical support.
A wall with pages from a book stuck too it.
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Beyond Detention is totally independent of the UK government, the Home Office and the management of Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre (YWIRC).