Host information: The home visit
All of our hosts will meet an experienced home visitor who will discuss hosting with you, check what accommodation is available, and answer your questions. Most of our home visitors are volunteers, but all will have had some professional experience in safeguarding, for example as GPs, district nurses or social work.
We know it might feel a bit odd that someone comes to visit you at home, but home visits are an important step in our process designed to help both you and us, and by extension, potential guests.
Your home visitor will help you to think through how your home life could work while a guest stays with you. For example:
- Have you considered the different situations that might occur?
- What should a guest be mindful of in your household?
- What will they have access to?
- What level of support are you able to offer?
- Who might you host in your home – do you have space for more than one person? Would you consider hosting a parent and child?
They will want to speak to you and any other adults in the household to make sure that everyone is happy with the idea of hosting.
This is also a good opportunity for you to ask any questions that you may have. Every home is different and no two situations are the same, so our home visitors might not have all the answers, but they can refer any questions they are not sure of back to the Placement team.
Not all hosts and homes are suitable hosting through Refugees at Home. For example, we would not usually place a single female guest with a single male host. This is not to say that something untoward will happen, we just want to ensure everyone is as comfortable as possible in the placement. We would not place guests with hosts who use derogatory or racist language or whose cultural views might make hosting inappropriate, and we would not ask our guests to stay in inappropriate accommodation, or with hosts with unrealistic expectations of the process.
Occasionally, it becomes clear to the home visitor and potential host that hosting is not going to work for the household at this time. Sometimes people are very keen to help someone in need but perhaps hadn’t fully considered the implications of hosting in their home. Perhaps someone in the household is not fully on board. The home visit is designed to help you gain clarity.
If you can’t go ahead for any reason, please let us know your decision as soon as you can. And if things change in future, you can get back in touch. If you are still keen to host but feel slightly anxious, let your home visitor know so they can feed this back to the Placement team. We want to do everything we can to make you feel at ease and make hosting a positive experience.
You can read more about home visits from Nick, one of our Home Visitors.
- the home visit is a chance for you to find out more and ask lots of questions
- your home visitor will want to meet other people in your household to make sure that everyone is happy to host
- your home visitor will help you think through the practicalities of hosting
- hosting is not for everyone. If you can’t go ahead this time there are lots of other ways you can support our work