homes for ukraine FAQs

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What is the sponsorship scheme Homes for Ukraine?

The Homes for Ukraine scheme allows people seeking sanctuary with no family ties to the UK to be sponsored by individuals or organisations who can offer them a home, such as a spare room or unoccupied residential unit.

The sponsor provides accommodation for free (at least for 6 months). Sponsors will receive £350 a month during the first 12 months of their guests’ stay. This increases to £500 once the guest has been in the UK for 12 months in order to help sponsors who are able to continue hosting for longer, up to a maximum duration of 3 years.

There is no limit on this scheme, it is open to Ukrainian nationals and immediate family members of Ukrainian nationals. The UK will welcome as many Ukrainians as wish to come and have matched sponsors.

Individuals arriving under this scheme are able to live and work in the UK for up to three years and access healthcare, benefits, employment support, education and other support.

Is the sponsorship scheme Homes for Ukraine still active?

The program is still active for applicants, however we have closed our form for new applicants through our organisation, while we work on new initiatives to find new sponsors in a safe and supported way. The Scottish and Welsh Government Schemes have also closed while they look for new sponsors.

When and how can I apply for/ collect my BRP?

If you applied to Homes for Ukraine scheme, and did not attend an in-person Visa Application Centre and you received a permission to travel letter, you have a six-month entry stamp in your passport. You must apply to extend your stay within six months of the date you entered the UK, to continue to live and work in the UK.

If you applied to the Homes for Ukraine scheme from outside of the UK and attended a Visa Application Centre, you should collect your Biometric Residence Permit as soon as possible after arriving in the UK. Your BRP will be available to collect at the selected Post Office around 10 days after you received the decision on your application under the scheme. Your BRP will be held at the Post Office for 60 days. After 60 days, your BRP will be returned to the Home Office but the Post Office will be able to advise you on next steps to receive your BRP.

If you applied to the Ukraine Family Scheme or Homes for Ukraine scheme and provided your biometrics via the ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app, you must allow 28 days from the date of your decision letter before collecting your BRP from the selected Post Office. Your BRP will be held at the Post Office for 60 days. After 60 days, your BRP will be returned to the Home Office but the Post Office will be able to advise you on next steps to receive your BRP.

Who completes the visa application?
  • There are numerous options: Either you or your sponsor can apply online or you can complete it together. You can find the form here. You can also get help from our consultants to complete the form.


Please be aware you will need personal details from each other.

How long will my visa last?

The entry stamp you received on entry to the UK provides evidence of your right to stay in the UK but is valid for the first six months only. To extend your stay for up to the three years allowed under this scheme, you will need to apply for a Biometric Residence Permit within 6 months of your arrival in the UK. More info here

Can I apply if I don't speak English?

Yes, you can apply for the program without speaking English. Our Ukrainian consultants can assist you with filling in the form. Book an appointment with one of our consultants here.

Is the application submitted for free?

Yes, the visa application submission is free.

Could I go to some other countries for a couple of days and then return to UK?

Yes.

Who is eligible to apply?
  • The scheme is open to Ukrainian nationals. It is also open to their immediate family members and family members of such Ukrainian nationals: a spouse, a civil partner, an unmarried partner (must have lived together in a relationship for two years), children under-18, parent if you are under-18, fiancé(e) or a proposed civil partner. These individuals may be of other nationalities.
  • Children under the age of 18 must be applying as part of a family unit which includes their parent or legal guardian to be eligible for the scheme. That family unit must stay together in the same sponsor accommodation.
    Children who are currently outside of the UK can use the scheme to reunite with their parent or legal guardian who is currently living in the UK, if they are the child’s sponsor.
    Unaccompanied children who are under 18 are not allowed to be sponsored by, or reside with, unrelated sponsors, unless they are their legal guardian.
Will I be able to stay in the UK after my 3 year visa has expired?

We are unable to answer that as it will depend on the situation at the time but it is expected that most displaced Ukrainians will wish to return home as soon as it is safe to do so.

Can I bring other family members afterwards?

Your family members may come to the UK under the UK sponsorship scheme providing they are Ukrainian and were in the Ukraine before 1st January 2022. The same rules and processes will apply to them as to you.

If i receive a visa how long can I stay in the UK?

If you have not already submitted biometric data to the UK Government (eg. on a previous visit to the UK or following a visit to a visa application centre) you will be issued a temporary 6 months visa which will allow you to travel to the UK. You will then be required to submit your biometrics anytime within the first six months in the UK and your visa will be extended to three years in total including the time you have already been in the UK.

Will my sponsor need to provide information for the visa application?

Yes - you will have to include information about your sponsor including proof of identity and other information about their home and circumstances. For more information please see the Ukrainian translation of the the visa application.

How can I submit my biometrics?

You will be contacted shortly after your arrival to explain how to provide this information. You will not need to provide this immediately, but you must have completed your application and provided the biometric information required within your first six months. Information can be provided using the UK Immigration: ID Check app or at one of our applications centres in the UK.

How long will it take to get a visa?

We understand that the UK Government is now able to process visas more quickly than before so we hope to see visas being issued in greater numbers soon but we will update this when we have more information.

Can I cancel an application once it has been submitted?

We are aware that some people have submitted applications under the UK's family scheme which is different from this sponsorship scheme and their family member can no longer accommodate them. There is nothing to stop you cancelling your first application providing you have not already received an acknowledgment that your visa application is being processed and re submitting but you are advised to cancel your first application by calling +44 808 164 8810 and selecting option 3. This helpline is open 24 hours a day 7 days a week. If you have submitted an application under this sponsorship scheme and your sponsor is no longer willing to host you or you wish to change your mind about your sponsor please also call the number above and it can be cancelled as above. To cancel you will need to provide your name, your date of birth, your contact details and the refernce number of your visa application. We are checking what can be done if you have already received a confirmation that your application is acknowledged.

Am I eligible for a visa if I left Ukraine before the 1st January 2022?

No you must have been in Ukraine prior to the 1st January 2022.

Can I come to the UK from any country in Europe?

Yes if you are eligible you may apply from any country in Europe and travel from that country.

Does each member of my family have to submit a separate visa application?

Yes. Everyone applying for a visa must submit a separate application including children.

If I have an expired international passport can I apply online for my visa and receive my visa without visiting a visa application centre?

If you hold a valid Ukrainian international passport or an expired Ukrainian international passport with a formal extension stamp issued by the Ukrainian government, you will need to complete an application online, but you do not need to attend an appointment at a visa application centre (VAC) to give your biometric information.

Do children need a passport?

Children over 5 need a passport. Children under 5 that do not hold a valid Ukrainian international passport will need to attend a VAC appointment to have a digital photograph taken.

As with adults, children without an international passport may apply online but will have to attend a visa application centre (VAC) to submit alternative documents before a visa can be issued. This means that if you as the adult has an international passport but your child does not you will have to attend a VAC.
https://pos.tlscontact.com/

Can I apply without having an international passport?

You can apply for a visa online if you do not have an international passport but you will have to attend a visa application centre (VAC) to submit alternative documents before your visa will be issued. This applies to children as well. You can make an appointment at a VAC here:
https://pos.tlscontact.com/

Will I have to pay rent to my sponsor?

The sponsorship scheme assumes no rent will be paid until the end of the sponsorship.
Where someone wishes to rent privately, or when the sponsorship ends, guests will have access to public funds and will be able to rent a property like anyone else. If they need to, they’ll be able to claim the housing part of Universal Credit or Housing Benefit. The UK government has useful information on renting property which is available in the How to Rent Guide.

Do I have to live with my sponsors for the six months or after?

No - you have complete freedom of movement. You may choose to live wherever you wish. So if you arrive in London and you get a job in another city you can move whenever you want.

Who is a Sponsor?
  • The host will be offered a tax-free payment of £350 a month by the UK Government, regardless of how many individuals they support. In Wales individual sponsor would get £500 a month.
  • A sponsor is anyone in the UK (of any nationality and any immigration status providing they have at least six months leave to remain in the UK) able to offer accommodation for at least 6 months. Sponsor can be also another Ukrainian who recently came to the UK and received his BRP and renting suitable accommodation to become sponsor for other Ukrainians.
  • The reimbursement process is with the sponsor to arrange with the Home Office (or other entity issuing payment).

The sponsor host is under no obligation to provide you with more than a home but we expect many will wish to do as much as they can to make you feel as welcome as they can but that will be a decision for each sponsor host.

Will the sponsor/host provide me with food or anything else?

Your sponsor is only committed to providing you with a home. Some sponsors may wish to help more but that is their individual choice and they are not obliged. That is why you will be provided with financial benefits if you do not have a job or other income.

How I can be sure that I will be safe with Sponsor?

The UK Government is responsible for checking that your host sponsor's home is a safe place for you to be. That will include various checks to be carried out on the host/ sponsor and an inspector should visit the property you will be staying in. There is no guarantee that your host /sponsor will be someone you are comfortable living with - so you should be careful in choosing your sponsor match if you are doing that yourself.

How do I find a sponsor if I want to come to the UK?

USPUK is officially recognised provider to help with matching and finding a sponsor, however we have had to close our form for new applicants while we look for more sponsors. We will add updates here when we are able to re-open the form.

Do I need a sponsor to apply and receive a visa?

Yes, you do but a sponsor can be an individual or an organisation. Scotland and Wales (countries that form part of the UK) can act as a sponsor if you would like to go to one of these countries. If you want to come to England or Northern Ireland you will need to have a named individual sponsor to apply for your visa.

How can I learn English when I arrive?

English lessons are on offer from various providers. Local councils can support with signposting to advice and support. Libraries often also offer free access to materials to learn English, and access to physical and online resources in other languages.

What are the benefits of moving to the UK over other places in Europe?

The process coming to the UK is slower than to many other European countries. You will have to make your own enquiries on what is available in those countries but the UK is offering a comprehensive package of a home (for at least six months), medical care, education and financial support. If you can wait the time necessary to obtain your visa (assuming you are eligible) then this might be attractive to you. We cannot advise you where to go - but simply let you know what is offered in the UK.

What jobs are available in the UK?

This will depend on the skills you have. Unemployment levels are relatively low in the UK and there are minimum wage laws that guarantee minimum wage levels depending how old you are and where you live.

Will I be helped to find a job?

There will be support given to Ukrainians wishing to find work by the UK Government's Work and Pensions Department and its agencies.

Will I be entitled to medical care in the UK?

The UK has a free medical care system available to all its citizens that you will be able to benefit from.

Will there be access to Universities?

A number of universities are making places available to allow Ukrainians to continue their studies. The entry requirements will vary amongst different universities.

What are social welfare benefits? How much it is?

The benefits you will receive will depend on your situation, (age, number of children, any disabilities, etc.)You will receive the same benefits as any UK citizen in your situation which you can find out more about here:
https://www.gov.uk/universal-credit/what-youll-get
You will also be entitled to housing benefits once you have left your sponsor's home.The Government Minister responsible has said 'My priority is that people fleeing Ukraine...get the support and help they need from day one to move forward with their lives immediately'.

What will happen to me if things do not work out with my sponsor host and either they want me to leave or I want to go?

The host sponsor has committed to providing you with a home for six months but of course this may not be possible for a range of reasons. If you have been matched through Citizens UK or another credible organisation they will be better placed to assist you, relocate to another sponsor or find an alternative solution to your needs. If you have not found a sponsor through a credible organisation you can go through the Citizens UK process. Click here to find out more.

Will I be able to send my children to school? Will I be able to access medical care? Will I be able to work? and if I am unable to find work will I have any income?

Once you have received your visa extension you will be able to stay in the UK for up to three years.
You will:

  • be able to send your children to school,
  • enjoy medical care free on the UK's National Health Service
  • have the right to work
  • have access to financial benefits to provide you with an income if required
How quickly children arriving from Ukraine will be offered a school place?

In England, we would expect that children begin attending school shortly after arriving in an area and councils should help families arriving from Ukraine to apply for school places and to inform parents which schools have places.
Schools’ admission arrangements apply in the normal way. When parents apply for a school place, the School Admissions Code states that admission authorities should aim to notify parents of the outcome of an application for a school within 10 school days and that they must do so within 15 school days.
Please see the following links for further information about school admissions arrangements in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

How can we get children into a school on arrival in the UK?

The Welcome Pack for those arriving from Ukraine contains advice on accessing education and childcare, in the section ‘Childcare and Education Services’. See more general advice on school admissions.
Any families returning to or moving to the UK should speak to the council school admission team in their chosen areas for information on how to apply for a school place. Councils should support parents in choosing schools, which includes providing information on where schools have vacancies and how to apply. As a sponsor you may wish to support them to do this.
Families in England can contact their local council to find state-funded schools in their area admission criteria for the schools they’re interested in.
The process is different if families live in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

Will children arriving from Ukraine have access to schools and are there any special circumstances for providing them with school places?

All children and young people arriving under these schemes have the right to access education and childcare whilst in the UK. The best place for all school-age children to be educated is in schools, and attending school is vital to help newly arrived children integrate as quickly as possible into the communities in which they are living.
Children arriving from Ukraine will have no specific additional priority for admission, but the council is under a duty to offer advice to parents on the school application process and should advise them where vacancies exist and how to apply.
Where there are no vacancies in local schools, the council should use its in-year fair-access protocol to place any children (including children arriving from Ukraine) into schools, above those schools’ normal capacity where necessary, as permitted by the School Admissions Code.

Can I bring a pet?

Yes, you can bring pets but they may have to be quarantined for up to 4 months (at the cost of the government). You can email pettravel@apha.gov.uk or click here for more information.

Will my pet need to quarantine?

You can bring your pet into the UK without it going to quarantine if it has:
- been vaccinated against rabies and had a blood test 30 days later to confirm the vaccine worked, and waited 3 months after the blood test to travel to the UK
- been microchipped
- a pet passport or health certificate
- had tapeworm treatment

If your pet does not meet these requirements, what you must do to bring your pet to the UK depends on when it left Ukraine. Find out more information by clicking here.

When I have received my visa how will I get to the airport?

You will have to get to the airport yourself. If you are traveling to the UK from Poland, you will be able to use regular trains to Warsaw and Krakow airports.

Will the transportation from my current location to the “sponsored” location be arranged?

We are currently unable to sponsor flights for applicants to the UK. We are working hard to find funding that will enable us to support travel expenses.