Based in Middlesbrough, Open Door works across areas of the North East, particularly Teesside and the Tees Valley. It’s core work is to provide advice, information and advocacy for refugees and asylum seekers. The charity offers three weekly drop-ins and one-to-one casework throughout the week. Around 900 people benefit over a typical year – and are supported with a whole host of issues including destitution support, benefits advice, finding jobs and training, ESOL, and the provision of a hot meal and weekly food parcels where necessary. A large part of what Open Door does is the provision of asylum and refugee accommodation through a hosting and housing project – this has expanded over recent years, and it now manages 39 houses including three properties that are owned by the charity, acting as a social lettings agent.
In February 2020, Allen Lane Trustees agreed to make a grant of £10,000 to Open Door. The funding will contribute towards general running costs of the charity. Outcomes of the work include that asylum seekers at risk of, or experiencing, destitution will be assessed and registered for support; newly recognised refugees will be supported with welfare, benefits, housing, and employment help; and at least ten additional destitute asylum seekers will be provided with safe, furnished homes.