A Fife woman who spent 19 years helping asylum seekers adapt to life in Scotland has been recognised in the Scottish Parliament.
Christine Murray, of Leven, was hailed as the “voice of the voiceless” for her work as a project manager of a community outreach scheme in Glasgow.
Now MSPs have backed a motion at Holyrood commending her extraordinary service in supporting people to rebuild their lives after being forced to flee from war-torn countries such as Bosnia and Iraq.
It has never been just a job for me.”
It praises Mrs Murray’s role in guiding a team of 20 people at St Rollox Church.
The group has provided English lessons, clothing, food and financial support since 2002.
The parliament motion wishes the 66-year-old all the best for the future following her retirement after 19 “inspirational and purposeful” years of service.
It was lodged by Glasgow Maryhill and Springburn SNP MSP Bob Doris.
He said: “It was a privilege to be able to recognise in parliament Christine’s extraordinary service and dedication in supporting asylum seekers and refugees in north Glasgow over almost two decades.
“Christine has inspired others and changed many lives for the better.
“I suspect she would be the first to play down her achievements and point to the work of the wider team over many years.
“However, she rightly deserves this recognition and her legacy will live on in the lives of the families who have been supported.”
‘Grateful for the recognition’
Mrs Murray said the community project was only successful due to the volunteers.
“I am very grateful for the recognition of the work which we were all involved in and that I was privileged to lead,” she added.
Mrs Murray described her role as interesting, challenging fun and humbling.
“It has never been just a job for me though and it has been a privilege to be part of St Rollox which has impacted on the lives of thousands of people in some way over the years,” she said.
Over the years she has been a voice for the voiceless.”
Rev Jane Howitt.
St Rollox Church is the Church of Scotland’s most diverse congregation, with 85% of members born outwith the UK.
And minister, Rev Jane Howitt is delighted Mrs Murray’s work had been recognised.
“Over the years she has been a voice for the voiceless in the north of Glasgow, whether that has been for those seeking asylum or those whom poverty has disenfranchised,” she said.
“She has been a lifeline to many who found themselves in the depths of despair.
“Her faith always shone through, as did her sense of humour, and as a result she was able to hold together a wide ethnically diverse team of volunteers.”