As the refugee crisis unfolded across headlines over the summer, the Oxford Students Refugee Campaign (OXSRC) was instigated as a means by which we as a community of students at the University of Oxford could do our bit to help those fleeing war and persecution.
The University of Oxford has a history of helping refugees, and has taken commendable steps so far this year to offer places to at-risk academics forced to leave their homeland, but they want to extend this initiative to students fleeing those same areas too. As one of the most prestigious universities in the world, if Oxford can seize the initiative with regards to this issue, then it will set a powerful example for other universities to follow.
The OXSRC aims at coordinating the efforts of student, academic and administrative members of the Oxford universities to work with refugee assistance organisations to develop organised, proportionate, clear and comprehensive financial and welfare support for displaced students whose studies have been disrupted. The University authorities have been very receptive to these ideas so far, and seem willing to back the scheme administratively. The plan is to get every student (and hopefully every staff member too) at Oxford University to pledge to contribute just £1 a month to fund such a scholarship, by passing motions through every common room. This is a small payment individually, but if every student in Oxford did this, could in theory cover the living expenses of 20 asylum-seeking and refugee students annually.
As well as passing these motions, this campaign is looking to get word out to potential applicants for these scholarships, and compile the much-needed evidence that the demand is there. In order to do this, University is working with a number of local, national, and international organisations, such as CitizensUK, Article 26 project, STAR, Universities UK, International Students Network UK, NUS, OUSU, Refugee Studies Centre, Asylum Seekers Network, Refugee Support Network, Oxford City of Sanctuary, etc.
Read more here.