Emma and Matt, ASSIST Hosts

We started hosting not just because we wanted to provide shelter and security for people who, through no fault of their own, had been left with nothing - even a roof over their heads - but also because in the current climate of anti-immigration rhetoric and so much prejudice around asylum seekers, we wanted to be part of a culture of welcoming, celebrating and learning from the people we met. We have gained so much from it. I'd say we've gained more than our guests have! We've learnt about other cultures, foods and religions, but possibly more importantly we've learnt about and seen the most remarkable hope, positivity, resilience and tolerance from people who had endured experiences worse than we could begin to imagine. This has helped us reflect on our own lives and given us a better sense of perspective. We've loved hosting and every single one of our guests has brought something interesting and new into our lives.