Government launches website to register Ukrainian refugees to stay with UK sponsors

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A website for members of the public to register their interest in sponsoring Ukrainian refugees to stay in their homes has been launched by ministers.

The scheme — offering those who provide sanctuary a monthly payment of £350 — went live after weeks of criticism over the government’s handling of the refugee crisis following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Michael Gove, the levelling up secretary, told MPs it will allow Ukrainian’s with no family links to come to the UK and benefit from “unrestricted access” to benefits, employment and health care.

He added there would be “no limit” to the number of Ukrainian’s who can benefit from the scheme.

The website — Homes for Ukraine — was launched today and states: “This bespoke scheme will offer a route to those who want to come to the UK who have someone here willing to provide them with a home.

The website states: “Sponsors should provide accommodation for as long as they are able, but we have a minimum expectation of 6 months.

“Someone is eligible for the scheme if they are a Ukrainian national or the immediate family member of a Ukrainian national, and were resident in Ukraine prior to 1 January 2022.”

It adds those members of the public with a person they wish to sponsor should get in contact with them directly and prepare to fill in a visa application, which will go live on 18 March, with all their details.

“If you don’t know anyone who you wish to sponsor you may wish to get in touch with charities, faith groups or local community organisations who are starting to make connections between individuals,” it adds.

The Independent has a proud history of campaigning for the rights of the most vulnerable, and we first ran our Refugees Welcome campaign during the war in Syria in 2015. Now, as we renew our campaign and launch this petition in the wake of the unfolding Ukrainian crisis, we are calling on the government to go further and faster to ensure help is delivered. To find out more about our Refugees Welcome campaign, click here. To sign the petition click here. If you would like to donate then please click here for our GoFundMe page.

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