David Bradwell is the Co-ordinator for Scottish Faiths Action for Refugees. He works for the Church of Scotland’s Church and Society Council as Building Global Friendships Programme Manager. He is a member of Humbie Parish Church (Church of Scotland) in East Lothian. He is a part of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland’s Churches Refugee Network, and works with the Joint Public Issues Team. In June 2017 he was elected to the Executive Committee of the Churches’ Commission for Migrants in Europe.
You can contact him by calling 07341 478 174 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Sabine Chalmers is the National Faith Groups Refugee Integration Co-ordinator for Scottish Faiths Action for Refugees. Her time is devoted to the New Scots: Rights and Communities project which supports the integration process of refugees; and supports community groups as they prepare to welcome refugees and involve them in community life. Originally from Austria, Sabine lives in Edinburgh, and worships at a local church. To contact Sabine email email@example.com
Robyn Knight is the Office Administrator for the Church and Society Council at the Church of Scotland. As part of her role with the Church of Scotland she supports Scottish Faiths Action for Refugees. Her background in is community heritage and she has a PhD in Human Geography, specialising in understanding the ways people think about and collect their heritage in times of change. Robyn lived and worked on the South coast of England for a number of years and now lives in Edinburgh. When not at work Robyn can often be found in a museum or at the beach and she attends a local Episcopal church. firstname.lastname@example.org
Anne Ross is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Bavaria, on secondment to the Church of Scotland. Part of her work is with Scottish Faiths Action for Refugees, where she has a particular role in resourcing Churches for prayer, worship and reflection on the themes of migration and refugees. She is interested in worshipping with people from different cultural and spiritual backgrounds. Originally from Germany, Anne has spent time living and working in Gambia and Italy. She lives in Edinburgh with her family. Anne’s email is email@example.com
Louise Turner is the Refugee Integration Development Worker and is responsible for coordinating The Edinburgh Weekend Club. The club works with local faith groups to provide refugees and their families with an opportunity to meet new people and feel like part of the local community in Scotland’s capital city. Originally from Kent, Louise has worked and travelled in a number of places over the years and now lives in Edinburgh.
Louise’s email is firstname.lastname@example.org
Members of our co-ordinating group:
Ian Boa is Acting General Secretary of Action of Churches Together in Scotland (ACTS). He is an ordained minister in the United Free Church of Scotland and was Moderator of the UFCOS General Assembly in 2017.
Ephraim Borowski is the Director of the Scottish Council of Jewish Communities.
As its Convener of the grandly-titled Standing Committee of Scottish Jewry at the time of Devolution, Ephraim led its transformation into SCoJeC, a democratic representative body with the authority to speak on behalf of the entire Jewish Community of Scotland. Before his early retirement from Glasgow University, Ephraim was head of the Philosophy Department, a member of Court, and President of AUT. He is the joint author of the Collins Dictionary of Mathematics, and has been President of the Royal Philosophical Society of Glasgow, a Governor of Hutchesons’ Educational Trust, Vice-President of Glasgow Jewish Representative Council, Chairman of Giffnock Synagogue, Chair of the Regional Assembly of the Board of Deputies, and a Lay Member of GTC(S). He is currently Treasurer of BEMIS and Chair of the National Independent Strategic Advisors Group which advises Police Scotland on equality and diversity matters. Ephraim was awarded an MBE for services on behalf of the Jewish Community, and was made an Honorary Member of the Royal Philosophical Society – only the third since Einstein!
Nick Bowry represents the Scottish Episcopal Church on our group. He is Rector of St James the Less, Penicuik and St Mungo, West Linton. In Nick’s previous charges in Aberdeen he was involved in Interfaith work and the Syrian New Scots settlement programme run by the city council. There were several Syrian families settled in his area. Nick is a member of the Iona Community, and is committed to engage with and take action on issues of social justice, peace and reconciliation.
Ian Buchanan is the current Convener of the Church and Society Committee in the United Free Church of Scotland. He is a retired Principal Teacher of Biology, having taught for 37 years. He is also a church elder and clerk to the Congregational Board of the United Free Church in Milngavie, just outside Glasgow.
Grace Buckley is a member of the National Justice and Peace Commission for Scotland, which is a commission of the Scottish Catholic Bishops’ Conference. The Justice and Peace Commission is a member of the Conference of European Justice & Peace Commissions, and works with them and the Pontifical Council Justitia et Pax.
John Collings is the Convener of the Church and Society Committee of the United Reformed Church National Synod of Scotland.
Martin Johnstone is the Secretary of the Church of Scotland’s Church and Society Council. Over the last 30 years he has supported the work of faith communities in many of Scotland’s economically poorest neighbourhoods including as the founding Chief Executive of Faith in Community Scotland. He is involved with a range of anti-poverty charities and currently helps to coordinate the development of a growing network of Poverty Truth Commissions across the UK. He is passionate that the wisdom of people who struggle against injustice is seminal to our ability to bring about real and lasting change.
Hilary Patrick represents the Society of Friends (Quakers) on SFAR. She is a lawyer who has worked with a large number of organisations concerned with human rights, and specialising in issues relating to those living with mental health challenges. She loves singing with radical community group, Protest in Harmony.
Imam Sayed Ali Abbas Razawi is an international academic and public lecturer, with training in Islamic Sciences and UK degrees in History, Comparative Philosophy, and Law. He is the Director-General and Chief Imam of the Scottish Ahlul Bayt Society. Sayed is involved in academic and civic outreach to those of faith and no-faith backgrounds; engaging with congregations across the world, religious leaders, governmental and diplomatic bodies, and civil society. Sayed has represented the Muslim community at European Commission High-Level Religious Leaders meetings. An advisor on policy relating to religion, integration models and counter-terrorism, Sayed was one of the cross-denominational Imams leading a 2014 UK media campaign against ISIS, publicised on 350+ media outlets worldwide. He is a trustee of the Maimonides Interfaith Foundation, a representative on the National Council for Imams and Rabbis, a core member of the Global Covenant of Religions, a committee member in promoting the UN International Day of Peace, representative, advisor and interfaith-chair for Shia Muslim organisations in Europe, a faculty member for the Cambridge Coexist Leadership Programme at the University of Cambridge, and a founding member of a historic and newly established Shia–Sunni Muslim Alliance in Scotland.
Maureen Sier has a PhD in Religious and Cultural Studies from Aberdeen University and has worked in the field of interfaith relations for over 17 years. She is currently the Director of Interfaith Scotland. Interfaith Scotland is a national organisation which aims to: provide a forum for religions to dialogue with one another; support wider interfaith dialogue within society; promote education about interfaith dialogue; encourage civic engagement by religions in Scotland and support religion and belief equality in Scotland.
Maureen’s commitment to interfaith engagement has led her to undertake interfaith activities in Europe, America and Asia Pacific. She currently serves as a Trustee for the UK Interfaith Network and has served on the Co-ordinating Committee of the European Women of Faith Network (Religions for Peace) and in 2007 received a UK/US Fulbright International Interfaith Scholarship. The Fulbright Scholarship allowed Maureen to spend time in America contributing to, and learning from, interfaith work in the US.
Prior to working for Interfaith Scotland Maureen taught Sociology and History at the National University of Samoa in the South Pacific.
Linsay Taylor represents the Muslim Council of Scotland. She is currently the project manager of a low-carbon environmental project. Previously she was a human rights adviser and immigration and asylum case worker.
Laurent Vernet is a French citizen and has been working in Scotland for over 25 years. He is a post-graduate in economics and a Bachelor in politics and European history. He has studied theology at The Queen’s Foundation for Ecumenical Theological Education (Birmingham). For many years he worked in the Scottish food industry as a marketing development and strategist. He has an experience of challenges met by migrants through international voluntary work and regular visits to migrants’ camps in various parts of the world. In June 2019 Laurent was made a Presbyter Minister within the Methodist Church in Scotland. He has the pastoral charge of the Methodist Churches in East Kilbride, the East of Glasgow and the chaplaincy of a retirement home. Previously he has served part-time as a minister in Tranent-Cockenzie and Granton.
Due to the retirement of our representative from the Salvation Army, we are waiting for them to appoint a replacement. In the meantime if you have any questions please contact us.