Sponsoring Ukrainian refugees

You can register your interest to become a sponsor / host for Ukrainians via the Homes for Ukraine portal.

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Advice for Homes for Ukraine sponsors

The UK government has provided advice on how this scheme will work for sponsors here: Homes for Ukraine scheme: frequently asked questions.

Registering to become a sponsor does not mean that you will be matched with a Ukrainian refugee automatically. Some of the organisations listed below can help you in matching with potential Ukrainian refugees.

How to match with a Ukrainian refugee(s) to arrange your sponsorship

The charity Reset has launched a Homes for Ukraine matching service.

A number of charities and non-government organisations are working to offer services to match potential sponsors and Ukrainian households seeking to come to the UK. These self-matching services that might be able to help you arrange your sponsorship arrangement include:

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Accommodation checks

Checks that will be required at your house

The Housing Standards Team will be checking for any significant hazards within your home, as well as whether there is adequate space and facilities for the intended guests.

The team will check for a range of hazards and risks in your home and the potential effect that each may have on the health and safety of those living in a property. These hazards include fire safety, gas and electrical safety, damp and mould, as well as checks on any other significant risks in the building. Documentation in relation to gas safety and electrical safety may also be required.

Is your home big enough to accommodate refugees?

The Housing team are required to check whether your home is spacious enough to house extra people.

Our team will be following the guidance set out here: Check if your home is overcrowded by law.

In terms of bedroom space, it is required that bedrooms are only shared if one of the following applies:

  • they are adult cohabiting partners
  • they are a parent and child
  • they are two siblings of the same gender if either of them are aged over 10
  • they are two siblings regardless of gender if aged under one

Moreover, the same bedroom should not be used for two people unless they knew each other previously.

How the checks will be arranged and carried out

A member of the Housing Standards Team will contact you directly by telephone or email to arrange the accommodation check at a convenient date and time. You will be asked some pre-inspection questions about your property.

On the day, the officer attending will need to inspect the whole of your house, including the boiler (if applicable) and electric consumer unit / fuse box. The inspection should take between 30-60 minutes in total.

The checks will be carried out as soon as practicable once the Council’s Housing Team have received your data from the Government Homes for Ukraine portal.

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Safeguarding checks

All hosts are required to undergo a ‘Disclosure and Barring Service’ (DBS) check. A DBS check is to confirm that you do not have a criminal record. Everyone over the age of 16 living in your home will need a separate DBS check.

We will start the DBS process as soon as you are matched with your Ukrainian guest and we are notified by the Homes for Ukraine Government portal. You will be visited by a Trafford Council officer responsible for Adults’ Social Care to discuss your sponsorship and host arrangements.

Extra checks if children will be staying in your home

If you are going to host Ukrainians under the age of 18, we will conduct further safeguarding checks. This visit will be conducted by Council officers responsible for Children’s Social Care. You will not need to pay for this check.

You will be contacted by us either by telephone or email to agree a suitable date and time for your visit.

We expect visits to be scheduled within two weeks of your hosting arrangement being agreed. A visit would take typically up to an hour.

If you have not heard from us by the time your guest arrives, please contact us at Access Trafford, which is open between the hours of 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. Tel: 0161 912 2000 or access.trafford@trafford.gov.uk

Your guests do not need to wait for confirmation of your checks, and can start their visa application process straight away.

Information checklist

It would be helpful to provide the following information to help the Council officers to assist their support for your arriving Ukrainian guests:

  • Visa or travel document information
  • Any required medication
  • Any previous health conditions
  • The immunisation history, if known, of the adults and children in the household
  • Preferred language to arrange appropriate interpreters if needed
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Funding support for sponsors

Sponsors of people on the Homes for Ukraine scheme can receive a monthly payment of £350 for up to 12 months, paid in arrears, for as long as you are hosting your Ukrainian guests and that your accommodation has met the necessary standards.

This funding support is only available for those hosting people through the Homes for Ukraine scheme.

People that have arrived in the UK under the Family Scheme visa are eligible to apply for other benefits when they have arrived in the UK, see the living and working in Trafford as a Ukrainian refugee page for further guidance.

Applying for funding support

The first monthly payment can be paid once the local council has visited to check the standard of the accommodation, the DBS is completed and a welfare check has been done. 

Once all checks have been completed and the payment is due you will receive an email inviting you to complete an online claim form. 

There can only be one payment per residential address.

How does this affect my other benefits and/or my tax status?

For sponsors who receive welfare payments, the government is ensuring ‘thank you’ payments do not affect your benefit entitlement. ‘Thank you’ payments will not affect any council tax discounts for single occupancy. They will be tax free.

If your guest moves out of your home for any reason, you must inform us at the earliest opportunity as you will need to let them know that you are no longer eligible for the monthly payments.

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Meeting your guests

How to arrange to meet the people coming to stay at your home

You can make your own arrangements to meet your guest(s). We recommend that you share phone numbers and confirm your address. You should agree a suitable arrival date and time to meet. Please let us know when you expect your guests to arrive, see below.

You can advise on the best means to get to your address from their port of entry. The guests are entitled to free public transport from the port of entry to your home (within 48 hours of their arrival in the UK). The Welcome Points can help them plan their journeys, too, and can help with translation services as needed. See the sections below for further guidance.

Informing us that your guests have arrived at your home

If you haven’t already, please contact Access Trafford to let them know that your guest(s) have arrived at your home. You can email access.trafford@trafford.gov.uk or call 0161 912 2000 (telephone lines are available 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday).

Please confirm your name, address, telephone number and the name of your guest(s).

Help at the airport or ferry port when your guests arrive

There are Welcome Points for people arriving from Ukraine at several of the major airports, including Manchester International Airport, and at St Pancras International train station. There will also be welcome arrangements at the other airports, including Liverpool Airport, ferry ports and London Victoria coach station.

Staff at Welcome Points will be able to support your guest on their arrival to the UK and resolve any immediate problems. This may be helping make onward travel arrangements, or through answering any questions they may have. The Welcome Points will be able to support guests by providing access to:

  • Welcome/rest point, with toilet facilities, telephone, telephone charging facilities and translation capability
  • Provision of any necessary immediate assistance including food, drink, over the counter medical supplies and other sundries
  • Signposting access to public services and advice
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Contacting other hosts in my area

We know that some sponsors would like to contact other families in their local area that are also hosting Ukrainians. We would suggest contacting your local Trafford community hub to link with other local residents involved with hosting Ukrainian families. There are community hubs in Altrincham, Old Trafford, Partington, Sale, Stretford and Urmston.

There is also a significant Ukrainian diaspora community in Greater Manchester.

Ukrainian Cultural Centre 'Dnipro' Manchester

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If the sponsorship relationship breaks down

If for any reason you need to end the sponsorship arrangement early, sponsors should inform us as soon as possible.

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Further information

If you require any further information about your hosting arrangement, please contact Access Trafford, which is open between the hours of 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. Tel: 0161 912 2000 or access.trafford@trafford.gov.uk