The Disasters Emergency Committee estimates that at least 4 million people have fled Ukraine as the war escalates and another 6.5 million have left their homes within Ukraine. We know many of you are thinking about ways you can help, including the possibility of sponsoring and hosting a Ukrainian refugee / household.

The government’s Homes for Ukraine scheme will support people to offer a spare room/s to Ukrainian refugees for at least 6 months. You can find out more and register your interest at the ‘Homes for Ukraine’ website.  The government has confirmed that people who provide accommodation through the scheme will be offered a thank you payment of £350 per month, which will not be treated as income for the purposes of tax or benefits entitlements; you should not charge any rent. The scheme is still being developed, and the government has said it will work with local community groups to help match people and support them.

So what do you need to if you’re considering opening up your home? We want to make this as easy as possible for you, so we just ask you to take these considerations into account:

  • The size of your home – you’ll need at least one spare bedroom and enough space for you and any guests to live comfortably.
  • How long are you willing to be a host? Be clear at the start if it’s only 6 months.
  • Do you have the time to help a guest adjust to life in the UK?
  • The potential costs e.g. additional heating, bedding, toiletries over at least 6 months; the thank you payment may take some time to be paid and will last up to 12 months.
  • There may be restrictions about who can stay in your home, e.g. about a minimum age – get in touch with us to check.
  • It’s worth checking whether any home or insurance policies on your home could be affected by hosting.

If you have a tenancy with us you just need to let CHS know if you are hosting a refugee, we just ask for their name and age.