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Inside Yarl’s Wood IRC

At the heart of our work is the emotional and practical support we offer to people detained in Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre.
We know that being detained is a significant cause of trauma, and that many of those who are detained have suffered trauma in the past, trauma that is now compounded. Detention is isolating and damaging. 

As long as people are detained in YWIRC, Beyond Detention will offer support and friendship, advocate for people’s rights and provide a link to the world outside.
Boat in transit
"I want to have life - I'm just sleeping, waking, eating, no better than a dog - they destroy you for nothing. Just because I'm a migrant"

Our values

Our staff and trained volunteers are a vital source of reassurance, comfort and help. They are compassionate, empathic, non-judgmental, culturally sensitive and kind.
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Our key services

Face-to-face visits

We offer weekly visits with a dedicated befriender who will provide one-to-one support, friendship and a listening ear. This service is open to anyone detained in Yarl’s Wood.

Email us at or call us on freephone 0800 3101 992 if you would like to organise a visit.

Weekly drop-in sessions

This is an informal setting where people can gather to chat, play games, take part in activities and meet Beyond Detention staff and befrienders for referrals and information. We hold separate sessions for men and women.

Practical support

We provide clothing and shoes to the many people who are detained with few or no personal belongings. We also supply mobile phone credit to enable people in Yarl’s Wood to keep in touch with loved ones, solicitors, our staff and befrienders, and other charities. We help people to navigate the system, ensure that they understand their rights, and help make complaints when necessary.
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We work with a wide range of organisations that counter the hostile environment of immigration detention. We connect people with many sources of help, including partners that provide support in other detention centres.
Find out more
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We also organise large-scale social events open to everyone detained in Yarl’s Wood, to mark religious festivals, for instance.
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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).