How we support Ukrainian guests

Refugees at Home is one of the government’s recognised providers of matching services to Ukrainians who use the Homes for Ukraine visa route to arrive in the UK. 

If you are in Ukraine and looking for a host through us, please read the information on this page. You should also read our Guest application guide, which includes the application form, and our Information for guests.

Update on Ukrainian visa schemes 

On 19 February 2024, the UK government changed the length of time that Ukraine programme visas will be valid for.  For all applications submitted after 3pm on 19 February, visas will be granted for an 18 month period.  There will be an opportunity to extend these for a further 18 months.  

Applying to find a host

Please note that you should not pay or be asked for money in exchange for being introduced to Refugees at Home.  

If you would like our support, you should read our Guest application guide which includes our referral form at the bottom of the page. You should also read carefully through our Information for guests. 

Please note that we are currently unable to accept referrals for Ukrainian guests where they will require 2 or more bedrooms for their household as laid out by the UK government.

Please complete the referral form as fully as possible.  Due to the high number of applications we receive, we do prioritise hosting those who are still in Ukraine or in certain other countries or situations.  If there are questions on the form that you cannot answer, please write this in, and we will come back to you.

We will ask you to let us know your preference of location when you apply.  Whilst we will do all we can to match you in this area if we can,  you should be aware that it’s incredibly unlikely that we will be able to place you in a major city in the UK, such as London or Manchester.  Please keep in mind that employment, travel and schools are available in every town and city in the UK.

If we are unable to assist you to arrive in the UK, we will signpost you to other organisations who may be able to help.

Contacting you

Our team are working very hard to respond to as many people as possible. Once we have capacity to assist you, a Placement Coordinator will be in contact with you primarily via email to get to know more about you and whether we will be able to place you with one of our hosts.  If we can, and once you have answered our questions, we will be able to start looking for a host for you. 

Connecting you with a host

All of our hosts have been visited by a member of the R@H team, and we will have checked their references.  When we have a suitable host for you, we will pass on the details we have learnt about you.  If they are available and willing to host you, we will then get in contact with you with their offer.  Once you are happy with this offer, we will introduce you to your potential host.  It is strongly recommended that you and they meet online or have a call to discuss how hosting might work.  We cannot offer multiple hosts for you to choose between, as demand is so high.

If you both decide to go ahead, we suggest that the host applies for the visa.  Information about applying for the visa is available on the website.  Refugees at Home is neither commissioned nor responsible for the visa application process. 

As soon as the visa is submitted, the UK Home Office will inform the local council in your host’s area that they intend to sponsor you and further checks will be carried out.  If your sponsor is found to not be suitable to host you by the council, you will be informed and it is the responsibility of that council to find you a new sponsor.  We are unable to assist in these cases.

Arriving in the UK

It is the responsibility of Ukrainians to arrange their travel to come to the UK.  The team at Reset have produced information on low cost or free travel to the UK.  You should coordinate the date of your arrival with your host, keeping your Refugees at Home Placement Coordinator informed.  

We’ll be in contact to let you know what you need to do on arrival.  As the Homes for Ukraine programme is a government initiative you are entitled to support from your local council once you arrive, for which they receive funding.  This is here to help you access English language classes, register for your benefits, GP and schools.  You are entitled to receive this support. 

We’ll stay in contact with both you and your host throughout the placement period of 6 months to see how things are going and to answer any questions you have.  We’ll also be able to signpost you to the support you have a right to access.

After your initial 6 months in the UK

Hosting under Homes for Ukraine is for a minimum of 6 months.  If you find your own property and wish to move in this time, this is entirely up to you, but due to the way in which this government-led programme has been set up, we will be unable to assist you in relocating to another host in this time.

We will provide guidance and advice on what to do if your host cannot host you after 6 months in the UK.

Useful links

Government guidance on Homes for Ukraine

Our support for rematching under the Homes for Ukraine programme

We are extremely sorry that Refugees at Home is unable to help with any rematching requests under the Homes for Ukraine scheme for placements not originally made through Refugees at Home. 

,We are currently only able to help with finding new sponsorship arrangements if we were involved in the original placement and we have available hosts in the same local authority area.  In all other cases, sponsors or guests requiring a rematch must do so through their Local Authority. This is due to the conditions and requirements of the Homes for Ukraine scheme.  Further information is available from DLUHC here. If people rematch without their Local Authority’s agreement, they will run the risk of leaving the scheme.  Please note that where there are children and other people with priority needs in the placement, the Local Authority has a duty to accommodate and may do this using their Homelessness provisions. 

As well as hosts and guests, we have been approached by a number of Local Authorities who have asked us to support them in making these rematches. Regrettably we are unable to do so because of the complexities surrounding the current scheme.  

We will of course provide help and support for any placements made via Refugees at Home, and we will continue to work tirelessly to find hosts for those guests newly arriving from Ukraine where we can. 

If you would like to apply to find a host through Refugees at Home, visit our Guest Guidance where there is an application form at the end of the page.  


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