Schools of Sanctuary

Information on the School of Sanctuary initiative.

The Schools of Sanctuary programme is an award scheme being piloted in the Urban Villages areas of Belfast and Derry/ Londonderry with support from the Northern Ireland Executive’s Urban Villages Initiative, the Belfast City of Sanctuary Group and the Education Authority’s Intercultural Education Service.

The School of Sanctuary award is aimed at helping schools to develop further the concept that schools are welcoming places for pupils and their families, where every child feels safe, where they are fully accepted. These schools will become beacons in the community as places where cultural diversity is valued and celebrated.

The Intercultural Education Service and Urban Villages have worked closely with the City of Sanctuary group to develop a customised Schools of Sanctuary resource pack and a promotional leaflet for schools.

Together with Urban Villages, the Intercultural Education Service offers support to introduce the Schools of Sanctuary programme initially to schools located in, or serving children from the Urban Village areas. Together with Urban Villages we can provide advisory support including connection with a range of strategic initiatives to enhance the experience for pupils, students, parents, staff and the wider school community.

If your school is interested in working towards a School of Sanctuary award, please contact the Intercultural Education Service’s Helpdesk by email at or telephone 028 9448 2210. 

Last updated: 10/08/2023