The British program Homes for Ukraine: Why are there more homeless Ukrainians in London?
One of the largest British government programs, Home for Ukraine, can no longer guarantee housing for refugees from Ukraine.
According to the publication of The Guardian, it is becoming more difficult for volunteers and local authorities in Britain to find people willing to accept Ukrainians. One and a half thousand Ukrainian families who sought to find housing under the Home for Ukraine program cannot get temporary housing.
According to official data from the British government, from the beginning of the full-scale war until August 26, 1565, families were registered as homeless in the country.
What caused the reluctance to accept Ukrainians?
The Home for Ukraine program searches for British people who are ready to shelter Ukrainian refugees in their homes for a period of up to 6 months. However, the difficult economic situation in the country is the main reason why the British don’t continue to participate in the program.
The charitable organization commented that it is becoming impossible to find new sponsors for Ukrainians. In September, benefactors didn’t agree to 60 rematching requests. The co-founder of the organization, Sarah Nathan, explains the situation as a result of bureaucracy.
"We are concerned that there is no change in strategy. It was very difficult for us to help with the rematching. It is too bureaucratic and there is no mechanism for one local authority to talk to another about this", - said Nathan.
The Local Government Association has also expressed concern about the housing situation for Ukrainian refugees. Its chair, James Jamieson, believes that there is no understanding of what steps refugees should take to find housing.
Robina Qureshi, CEO of Positive Action In Housing, which has matched more than 350 Ukrainians with hosts in Scotland, England and Northern Ireland, said the government's housing scheme had "layers upon layers of chaos" alongside a lack of strategy.
There are fears that there will be more Ukrainians without homes in Britain. The Guardian made predictions in the summer that the number of refugees without dwellings will increase to 50,000 in a year. The British are concerned that the government hasn’t developed an algorithm of actions that will help avoid the crisis.
What is Home for Ukraine?
This is a sponsorship program that allows citizens of Ukraine and their relatives to come to Great Britain, if they have a sponsor - a person who is ready to provide refugees with their housing. Participation in the program is free. Refugees will be able to live, work and study in the UK, as well as access government benefits.
We remind you that under the Home for Ukraine program, Ukrainians can receive:
• the right to legal stay for up to 3 years;
• housing provided by a sponsor for at least 6 months;
• legal employment;
• access to the National Health Service and social benefits;
• access to schooling.
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