In March, the UK regulations for international volunteers changed & now a sponsoring business or charity is required. However, when this changed, Immigration didn't tell any UK charities or businesses, so all kinds of people have been refused entry into the UK: missions teams, students, interns, etc. Needless to say, none of our friends in Glasgow knew about this which is why I'm now in the US.
Over the course of our 12 hour detention in London-Heathrow Airport, we learned this about the new regulations:
A UK Sponsor is needed to get into the country. What this entails is a business or charity that has gone through certain steps to become a registered sponsor which takes about 6 weeks. This sponsor then requests a certain number of slots which they can fill with people who will be entering the country as unpaid workers connected in some way to their charity or business. When the sponsor finds the people to fill those spots, they input the name & are given a number. This number is then given to the person who, in turn, brings that number with them to the UK, presents it to the UK Immigration people & whisks blissfully into the glories of volunteering in the UK.
There is a .pdf with 611 pages of sponsoring organization found here: http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/sitecontent/documents/employersandsponsors/pointsbasedsystem/pbsregisterofsponsors
If you know of any UK businesses or charities & would be willing to see if they are on the list & contact them on behalf of us to see if they'd be willing to chat w/ me about trying to figure out a way to help us get into the UK & eventually to Glasgow, it would be so much appreciated. We would be willing to donate some time to working w/ them if that would be a help to them.
Please be praying for us as we seek to return to Glasgow & figure out what God's wanting to do w/ the us in the midst of all of this. Thanks for reading!