LifeLine Projects

Café Connect is a programme run by our FaithAction team and funded by the Department of Levelling Up, Housing, and Communities. Using a methodology shared with Creative English, Café Connect sessions supports new arrivals to the UK—notably those from Hong Kong—by giving them a space to practice and develop their English while also learning more about the local community, adjusting to the local culture, and making new friends.

Names and identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals.

Sara joined Café Connect around the time we began back in 2023. Although she was fairly fluent in English, she felt at a big disadvantage when trying to speak it in the local area. She said she felt she was lacking depth in the language and was limited in her ability to both express herself and to understand others—particularly when two local people spoke to each other using area-specific language.

She threw herself into Café Connect, coming to sessions every week. She was asking lots of questions and was being a really active part of the group. Every week, she would come with new questions about pronunciation—the specific hiccups which were hindering her own speech and her comprehension of others—and other language queries.

She was very quick, too, to learn whatever she could about working culture here in the UK. She found certain sessions that focused on employment and job applications especially useful, but she was always so enthusiastic about whatever was going on in any given session.

One question Sara brought to us in the first few months was about team working in the UK. She’d been given some feedback at work she found confusing and upsetting—that she wasn’t a good team player. She’s a very motivated person and has always prided herself on being a good team member and talked this over with a few people at the session. We were also able to arrange for her to talk one-to-one with one of the volunteers in some depth and to help identify what cultural, or other, factors might be the issue.

More recently, Sara has been unable to attend sessions as frequently due to her increased working hours, but she still keeps in touch and even recently contacted us to say she wanted to share some good news. She had received recognition from her employer on two separate occasions for her hard work, praising her diligent nature and dedication to supporting her colleagues.

Theo, Youth Development Worker

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This means a lot to me, because I feel that I’ve settled down well in my job. I would like to send my BIG THANKS to you. Without your guidance, I don’t think that I could get this job, not to mention to adapt so well to working life here.

Café Connect participant

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These articles may contain testimonials by LifeLine staff members and service users of our programmes and/or services. These testimonials reflect the real-life experiences and opinions of such staff members/service users. However, the experiences are personal to those staff members/service users and may not necessarily be representative of all staff members/service users of our programmes and/or services. We do not claim, and you should not assume, that all staff members/service users will have the same experiences. Individual results may vary.

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The views and opinions contained in the testimonials belong solely to the individual user and do not reflect our views and opinions. Staff members/service users are not paid or otherwise compensated for their testimonials.



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