Host information: Ukraine sponsorship

On 19 February 2024 the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) and the Home Office announced changes to the Ukrainian visa schemes in the UK.  

Ukraine Family Visas This visa route has now closed, ending the reunification of Ukrainian families in the UK through this option.

Ukraine Extension Scheme This will now be closed, with final applications needing to be in with the Home Office by 16 May 2024.

Ukraine Permission Extension Scheme (UPE) The government has announced that Ukrainians who have arrived on all routes will be able to extend their visas at the end of their initial 3-year period.  This will allow those already in the UK to stay for an additional 18 months.  Ukrainians will need to apply 3 months before the end of their existing visas, although the process for doing so has not yet been created.  It is currently unclear whether regulated immigration advice will be required to complete this process, or if fees will be charged for this.  The Government press release relating to the extension is here.

Homes for Ukraine Scheme

Some significant changes have taken place to this scheme from 3pm on 19 February 2024, and will affect all visas submitted after this date.

Visa length: Ukrainians arriving on this route will be provided with an 18-month visa, at the end of which they will be able to apply for a further 18 months extension under UPE.

Sponsor eligibility: DLUHC have announced that from 3pm on 19 February 2024 all sponsors must hold British or Irish citizenship, or have settled status in the UK in order to be able to sponsor a Ukrainian guest.  This represents a significant change from the previous eligibility where anyone who could prove their right to be in the UK was able to sponsor.

The government guidance for Ukrainians wishing to come to the UK has been updated to reflect these changes.

Homes for Ukraine sponsors – how we will support you

Thank you for supporting Ukrainians arriving to the UK through the Homes for Ukraine programme.  As this is part of a Government-led programme, and local authorities receive funding to support hosts and guests alike, we do approach these placements slightly differently than when we host other guests who do not have access to this support.

Introducing you to a potential guest

We’ll introduce you to guests who have been through our self-referral process.  We ask potential guests about their situation, their preferences, location requirements, needs and expectations for arriving in the UK. 

Once we have found a guest whose situation matches your hosting arrangements, our Placement Coordinators will contact you to check your availability and whether you feel this might be a suitable match for you.  We’ll talk to you about what the guests have told us, and share pertinent information through our portal with you.  We respect your decision about who you believe it is suitable for you to host, this is a big decision. 

If you decide the match is suitable, we will connect you to one another.  It’s really important, and we strongly recommend, that you correspond directly with the guest before accepting to sponsor them.  If you meet online, or talk to one another, and it doesn’t feel right, you can just let us know.

After accepting your guest

Once you have met and you have both confirmed you’re happy to proceed, it will be time to apply for the visa.  Refugees at Home will not be involved in this process, as we’re not able to give immigration advice, however, there are some excellent organisations who can assist in this process:

Ukraine Advice Project:

Here for Good have guides on their website on the visa process:

Due to the exchange of your personal data, we strongly recommend that the host leads the visa application process, asking for the personal details of their guests rather than the other way around.

R@H does not have any input or influence on the visa processing times or process, this is all at the discretion of the Home Office.  If your guest is experiencing long delays in their visas being issued, please contact your Placement Coordinator who can advise what you can do.

Planning for arrival

It is your guest’s responsibility to arrange travel to the UK. You should arrange their arrival date between you – remember to be clear about when you can welcome them at a time convenient to you.  They are most likely to need support in the first few weeks following their arrival. 

Please check our Information for hosts for advice about preparing for your guest’s arrival and guidance on how to help ensure the placement is a success.

When we will contact you

We want to strike the right balance of being here to support you and not getting in your way, so we check in with our hosts as outlined below.  Remember that you can contact your Placement Coordinator outside of these times for any questions you have. 

Waiting for the visa

As you await the visa for your guests to be able to arrive in the UK, we will keep in contact with you to find out how things are progressing and to find out anticipated arrival dates of your guests.  Please do let your Placement Coordinator know any updates as you have them


Fortnightly check ins post introduction

Arrival day

We will be in contact within a couple of working days of your guest arriving.  We don’t want to get in your way as they settle in, but remember that we’re at the end of the phone if you need us.

Arrival day + 1 day

Post Arrival – month 1

We will be in contact 2 weeks after the arrival of your guest to touch base with you and to see how things are feeling.  Remember, we’re at the end of the phone/email for questions you might have

Arrival Day + 7 days

Post Arrival – month 2

 We will check in here to see how things are settling, and be here to listen if you need us.  We will be asking you about plans that your guests are making for their lives in the UK, and to offer advice regarding their ongoing accommodation after your hosting ends.

Arrival Day + 6 weeks

Post Arrival – month 4

We will be in contact to talk about your plans for hosting beyond 6 months and to offer signposting and guidance for what needs to happen if your guests need to move out at the end of the initial 6 month period

Arrival Day + 3.5 months

Post Arrival – month 6

If you’re bringing your hosting to an end at month 6, we will be in contact about the practical steps to take, and to thank you for what you’ve done.


If you are going to continue hosting your guests beyond 6 months, we will be letting you know about how we will support you.

Arrival Day + 5.5 months

If hosting beyond 6 months

Post Arrival – month 9

We will touch base with you to see how things are progressing and if there’s any support you require with hosting.  Remember that you can always contact us if you need us outside of these times.

Arrival day + 9 months

Post arrival – month 12

We will be in contact to find out how things are going with your hosting and any plans to bring this to a close.   Remember that you can always contact us if you need us outside of these times.

Arrival day + 11.5 months

If hosting beyond 12 months


We will check in with you every 3 months, but remember we’re here when you need us!

Arrival day + 15, 18, 21 months



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