The schemes for Ukrainians and their family members to come to the UK are being managed by the Government. A good starting point for answers to any questions you may have about the schemes is the Government’s website:
- Homes for Ukraine scheme FAQs
- More information on becoming a sponsor
- Information on the Ukraine Family Scheme
Some frequently asked questions relating to Southampton’s support for Ukrainians and their immediate family members arriving in the city are answered below.
What support is the council providing to Ukrainians once they arrive in the city? SHOW
There are two different schemes running alongside each other. The Family scheme involves Ukrainians and their immediate family members applying to stay with family who are already living in the UK. The council is not directly involved with providing support for people entering the UK under this scheme, however, Family scheme members will still be able to visit our Welcome Hub (see Welcome Hub FAQ below) to access information and can email questions to email@example.com.
The Homes for Ukraine scheme involves volunteers in the UK offering accommodation for Ukrainians and their immediate family members. More information on this scheme is available at Homes for Ukraine scheme FAQs. The council will be administering the optional £350 monthly 'thank you' payments to the host households and will be able to offer some support to Ukrainians who come to Southampton on this scheme. The level and type of support offered will depend on the needs of people arriving. Where required, this will include helping to find school places, linking people with support for their health and other needs, enabling people to access English language courses, support to access the welfare and benefits system, and support to access employment opportunities.
Is there a Welcome Hub where Ukrainian refugees can go to get help once they arrive? SHOW
Yes. We are opening a Welcome Hub in the entrance to the Central Library (O2 Guildhall Box Office) at the Civic Centre on Monday 4 April. The Hub will be open from 10am to 2pm Monday to Friday. The Hub will be able to provide information on what help is available and how to access it. Central Library is based in the Civic Centre, Southampton, SO14 7LW.
If anyone is unable to visit the Hub but would like information, they can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07471 025 913.
Once Ukrainians have arrived under the Homes for Ukraine scheme, how do host households, and our Ukrainian guests access the support available? SHOW
Registered host households in the city are already being contacted directly by the council and will be given a direct email address to use when contacting us. In addition to support provided to guests by the council as part of the Homes for Ukraine Scheme, sponsors and guests will be able to visit the Welcome Hub for support and guidance. The Hub, opening on Monday 4 April is in the entrance to Central Library (O2 Guildhall Box Office) and will be open from 10am to 2pm, Monday to Friday. The Government has also published a guide for Ukrainians arriving in the UK.
I have Ukrainians staying with me under the Family scheme. What support is available to us and how do we access it? SHOW
There is currently no specific support available from the Government for people who enter under this scheme – however, the Welcome Hub will be able to provide Family scheme members the same general information that will be available to those arriving via the Homes for Ukraine scheme.
CLEAR and EU Welcome are able to offer advice, guidance and signposting to Ukrainians and their family members who are now in the city. This advice includes topics such as immigration status, benefits and housing. People can contact them by calling 023 8022 1111 or request a call back via the CLEAR Advice form.
They are unable to offer advice to those seeking to bring family members from Ukraine to the UK.
I am a confirmed host household. Will I lose my single person Council Tax discount if I host a person / family from Ukraine? SHOW
No. Council Tax discounts will not be affected if you sponsor and host Ukrainian guests in your home. The £350 ‘thank you’ payment will not affect any Council Tax discounts.
How will the council ensure the safety of those arriving from Ukraine under the Homes for Ukraine scheme? SHOW
Sponsors will undergo initial criminal records checks before any visa is issued by the Home Office. In addition to this, the council will undertake Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks for all people aged 16 and over in the sponsor household.
The council will also visit guests once they have arrived in their accommodation to meet with them and their host to carry out an initial welfare check and provide information about ongoing support.
How will you ensure that those arriving from Ukraine do not pose a risk to the hosts they will be staying with? SHOW
The Government is conducting standard security checks on Ukrainians before they are issued with a visa.
I run a local business and I’d like to offer employment to Ukrainians once they have arrived. How can I do this? SHOW
The Government have information on their website for businesses who would like to offer employment opportunities. See Offering work to people who have come to the UK from Ukraine.
Local businesses that would like to offer employment should email DWHI.EmployerOfferInbox@dwp.gov.uk clearly stating that they would like to offer employment to Ukrainians in their email.
I am not part of the Family or Homes for Ukraine schemes, but I’d still like to help. What can I do? SHOW
There are a number of ways in which people can help:
Further information on how you can help and how to donate safely is published on the Government’s website. See Ukraine - What you can do to help.
If you are a local group that would like to offer support or help, please email email@example.com.