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Communities for Afghans

Are you and your community interested in supporting a family of refugees from Afghanistan to make the UK their home?

Community Sponsorship is a model that allows local people to support refugees to be resettled into their community. Groups are provided with training and support - and when the family arrive help them to navigate local services and becoming part of the community.

After two and a half years of campaigning for a Community Sponsorship scheme for Afghans and almost a year of collaboration with the UK Government to turn the idea into a reality and secure the funding, the Communities for Afghans Scheme is scheduled to open for applications from prospective Community Sponsorship Groups in a matter of weeks. Citizens UK has been asked to act as sole Principal Sponsor for 100 Community Sponsorship Groups for 100 Afghan families eligible for resettlement under the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme over the next six months. Our aim is that this serves as a model that can be opened up to a much wider range of people in the future if we can demonstrate the success of this.

Working with a team of leaders and staff with experience of community sponsorship, and officials at the Department for Levelling Up, we have co-designed a scheme that takes the best of the traditional Community Sponsorship scheme run by the Home Office, blends it with some learning from Homes for Ukraine, and removes some of the barriers that have made it hard for some groups to participate

  • Financial Support: Community Sponsorship Groups will be paid a monthly Sponsor Support Fund (between £200 and £500) to cover costs such as rent top-ups, void costs, furnishing etc., and be able to apply to the Citizens UK Sponsor Expenses Fund to help with upfront costs if needed;
  • Fast Process: The process from application to resettling the family is designed to be swift, with timescales lasting a few weeks rather than months;
  • No Application to the Home Office or the Local Authority: Community Sponsorship Groups will be supported and trained by Citizens UK, with no requirement to apply to the Home Office or the Local Authority;
  • Increased Support from Citizens UK/Sponsor Refugees: Our talented staff team will be on hand to provide training and support for Community Sponsorship Groups;
  • Less Fundraising Required: unlike previous community sponsorship models, there will not be a requirement to raise £9,000.

So, who are we looking to recruit to participate? Well, we are looking for people who can:

  • Recruit a small team of at least 6 people committed to offering a warm welcome to an Afghan refugee family in your community for the next two years;
  • Help identify and secure a property to house the family (it needs to have its own front door and be of good quality);
  • Support the family to access benefits and public services, and move towards sustainable employment.

If this sounds like you and you think you could get things up and running in the next 3 months, please fill in the form to register your interest. We’re particularly keen to work with existing Community Sponsorship Groups and Resettlement Partners, and also Citizens UK member organisations, but this is open to anyone and no special qualifications are required.

If you have any further questions please contact us here.

Want to be involved? Let us know here and we will be in touch within 5 working days.

An organisation is not required

If you don't currently - that's okay.