Tower Hamlets is a borough with a diverse and fast-changing community. New residents come every day to join either long established migrant communities or as part of new communities. We have a hyper-diverse population and a high churn rate.

The New Residents and Refugee Forum (NRRF), established by Tower Hamlets Corporate Strategy and Equality team, seeks to create a platform for dialogue between community members, third sector organisations, service providers and the Local Authority. Each forum focuses on an issue relevant to new communities in Tower Hamlets and aims to identify local priorities as well as find ways we can work in partnership to address community issues.

This forum is intended to provide the space for a wide range of stakeholders from public and third sector organisations, and also new migrants in Tower Hamlets to come together to explore the issues that refugees and new migrants face in equal access to services and to inform local policy-makers. The objectives of the forum are to:

The objects of the Forum are to:

  • Better understand the challenges and issues faced by refugees and migrants in Tower Hamlets.
  • Hear from local organisations about their experience of engaging with new community members in Tower Hamlets.
  • Explore how agencies can work together to allow new communities to better influence local policy, as well as identify and respond to multiple needs and vulnerabilities.

In order to facilitate these aims, each forum looks at a specific issue as it relates to migrant communities. The format of forums is usually that before each forum, a short outline of the topic to be covered will be disseminated laying out the general landscape and issues, providing context and information on the situation in Tower Hamlets if available, or in the wider environment if not. At the forum there will be short presentations on specific issues from relevant agencies and then an opportunity for all participants to raise issues that they are experiencing. The forum will then facilitate discussion to explore strategies for better responding to emerging needs and overcoming common problems.

For some issues, a small working group may take matters forward and use a multi-agency approach to take issues forward.

If you would like any more information about the NRRF please contact