COVID-19 Torture Survivor Emergency Relief Fund: Press Release

Charity Freedom from Torture launches new fund to support torture survivors during COVID-19 crisis.

The UK-based charity Freedom from Torture has launched a new grant scheme to support hard-to-reach torture survivors and smaller frontline organisations that are helping them during the global pandemic.

Freedom from Torture rehabilitates people who have fled torture and helps them rebuild their lives in Britain. In March, the charity launched its Do what we can fundraising campaign, to raise funds to support Freedom from Torture’s Emergency Relief Fund and its frontline work. The campaign has enabled the charity to extend support to more torture survivors in Britain who are currently struggling to manage during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Freedom from Torture is inviting small community-based organisations who are supporting survivors of torture to apply for a one off grant between £200 and £2000. The grant can be used to provide small emergency payments to help individuals and families with food, clothing and other essential items.

Sonya Sceats, Chief Executive of Freedom from Torture, said:

“The lockdown may be easing but the Covid-19 crisis is not over for torture survivors in Britain. We know from our clinical services that many are still facing impossible choices between food, medicine and hygiene products, while fear of infection and strain of prolonged isolation are sending many deeper into despair.

“We are heartened by the outpouring of public compassion for those battling these problems while trying to recover from torture, which was reflected in the amazing response to our Do What We Can Covid-19 emergency relief appeal.

“This grants scheme is our way of channelling this generosity to more torture survivors beyond our own clients, and supporting the incredible work that small charities on the frontline are doing to keep them safe and well.”

Notes to editors:

·       For media enquiries, please contact Aalia Khan: / 07912579190

·       Applications from grants are available from 20 July. Please click here to find out more.

·       Freedom from Torture is dedicated to healing and protecting people who have survived torture. We provide therapies to improve physical and mental health, we medically document torture, and we provide legal and welfare help. We expose torture globally, we fight to hold torturing states to account and we campaign for fairer treatment of torture survivors in the UK.