Support for sponsors

If you have registered for the Homes for Ukraine scheme and have been allocated an individual or family to host, the information below will help you. We will be update this information, as and when we get it. 

IMPORTANT: Whilst the government are refining the data sharing service, it is essential that you notify us as soon as possible if your guest has booked a flight. Please email HomesForUkraine@lancashire.gov.uk with their expected date of arrival.

The UK government has produced useful information about the scheme: 

Our webinars will help to answer any questions your or your guests may have.

Our Refugee Integration Team will give information about applying for benefits, looking for employment and finding language classes near you. The team will also be able to answer questions on how to apply for school places and find further education courses for young people aged 16+.

If your guest is at risk of destitution, please refer to 'Section 5: Housing & Homelessness' from our Sponsor Handbook.

You can also find a list of local authority out of hours emergency numbers.

Blackburn with Darwen

Blackpool

Burnley

Chorley

Fylde

Hyndburn

Lancaster

Pendle 

Preston

Ribble Valley  

Rossendale

South Ribble

West Lancashire

Homelessness Prevention

Wyre

Anyone with a residential spare room or separate self-contained accommodation that is unoccupied is able to register for the scheme.  The accommodation must be available for at least 6 months, fit for people to live in, and suitable for the number of people to be accommodated.

Our Refugee Integration Team are ready to work with you to offer safety and support to as many Ukrainians as possible.

Before signing up for the scheme we want you to consider the following questions, to ensure that everyone feels protected and secure:

Housing

  1. Have you checked with your landlord, mortgage provider and home insurance provider to ensure you are able to offer a space?
  2. Are you happy to give a copy of your house key to your guest?
  3. Will you be comfortable allowing people access to your home if you go on holiday?
  4. How will you feel if your guest still hasn't found a house after 12 months? Will you be able to let them stay? Will you feel comfortable evicting your guest? 

Financial

  1. Will this impact on your council tax, utility bills or rent?
  2. Will you be able to provide food and other basics whilst arrivals wait for their benefits claim to be processed?
  3. Can you afford to pay for their flights to the UK? Sponsors are being asked to support Ukrainians to get to the UK and are expected to pick them up from the airport.

Practical 

  1. Do you have the time to support people to register to GPs, dentists, etc.?
  2. Can you help someone navigate a new place and new systems without interpretation or translation support?
  3. Are you comfortable with social workers and support staff visiting your home to help with integration?
  4. Will you feel comfortable living with people who have a very different parenting style or culture?
  5. Are you happy living with someone who has not had any Covid-19 vaccinations?

Emotional

  1. Have you spoken to your family or children about how they feel about hosting a new person in your home?
  2. Have you met someone with PTSD? People suffering from trauma can be very depressed, hopeless and angry. This can be difficult to be around and needs specialised treatment and therapy. PTSD often lasts for years.
  3. Are you able to support someone who has complex mental health problems? Sponsors will be provided with no medical history about a guest.

We are not able to provide any information about the status of your visa application. However our Refugee Integration Team will begin safeguarding checks while you wait for your decision. The first three steps are as follows:

  1. An enhanced DBS check
  2. A Property Check
  3. An Initial Assessment

We are still awaiting further details about the checks from central government so we are unable to give a timescale for completion.

This will change soon however and we hope to have a fast and efficient process in place as soon as possible.

These checks will not impact the speed of your guest's visa being granted and it is likely that your guest will have arrived prior to us completing all the necessary checks.

In the meantime, we recommend that you familiarise yourself with with the Home for Ukraine Sponsor Guidance

IMPORTANT: Whilst the government are refining the data sharing service, it is essential that you notify us as soon as possible if your guest has booked a flight. Please email HomesForUkraine@lancashire.gov.uk with their expected date of arrival.

There are a lot of services and systems that our Refugee Integration Team are putting in place to ensure our new guests can fully integrate into the community, from creating school places to preparing the voluntary sector and translating guidance in to Ukrainian.

We are in the process of recruiting a Homes for Ukraine Sponsor Support Worker who will support each of you on a one-to-one and group basis. In addition to this, we will ensure that your guests have access to a named Support Worker who can help them on their journey to independence.

Other resources we will provide you with include:

  • A Sponsors' Handbook
  • A Guest Handbook in Ukrainian explaining UK systems
  • Free webinars and in-person meetings on various topics
  • Signposting to relevant community services
  • Community gatherings and celebration events

This government's guidance outlines important information for sponsors including responsibilities of sponsors and how sponsors may support their guests.

See the government's guidance - Homes for Ukraine Sponsor Guidance

The government is making available an optional £350 per month payment for up to 12 months towards costs you may incur as a host. Before you can claim this, our Refugee Integration Team will need to undertake a number of checks.

We are still awaiting detailed guidance from government as to how these payments will be issued and what checks they want us to complete in order to release the funds. Payment will be a month in arrears once the checks have been successfully completed.

If you live in the following area, you can apply via your district council: 

A few people have asked the team if it possible to share Sponsor responsibilities by taking a family for less than six months and then moving the family to a second sponsor for the remainder of the six months.

This is something we would strongly advise against.

Repeatedly uprooting a person who has fled from a warzone can exacerbate trauma. A change of address can also impact on benefits and school places. Additionally, the £350 'thank you' payment will only be issued to the Lead Sponsor who initially accommodates the guest/s.

Further information for hosts/sponsors

Contacting us

You can email the team at: HomesForUkraine@lancashire.gov.uk. Please allow 3 working days for a response.

Helpline

Homes For Ukraine helpline: 0300 123 6718.

Open 9am until 5pm, Monday to Friday for sponsors and guests in both English and Ukrainian

Please call the helpline if you have any queries regarding the scheme or if you need to access further support.