Situation in Ukraine: Information for guests, sponsors and families

Russia has invaded Ukraine, and the world is following the story very closely. Following Russia’s invasion of the country on Thursday 24 February 2022, hundreds of thousands of people have left their homes to escape the conflict.

The UK and international partners are united in support of Ukraine. The UK government continues to provide economic, humanitarian, and defensive military assistance to Ukraine, and is imposing additional sanctions on Russia and Belarus.

Read more about the government response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine

The government’s Ukraine Family Scheme allows an immediate pathway for those with family already living in the UK to apply for a visa for up to three years. It allows those who are granted a visa through this route to work, access public funds for the period of the visa, and it continues to be in places and will operate as outlined on the government website.

Further details: 

FAMILY SCHEME

The government have announced a new scheme, the Ukraine Extension Scheme, for Ukrainians already in the UK to extend their stay. A Ukraine Extension Scheme visa will be granted for a period of up to 36 months and include the right to work and access to public funds. The scheme opens on the 3 May 2022.  Further information can be found here.

Doncaster is a community that has always supported those who need help, and once again we’re seeing the people of Doncaster stepping forward to help the people of Ukraine.  
 
If you do want to help, you can donate to the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) Ukraine Appeal to help DEC charities provide food, water, shelter and health care to refugees and displaced families.  

Donate to the DEC Ukraine Appeal

There are also many local community-led projects happening as our fantastic volunteers around the borough step forward and give their support.

You can now register your interest in accommodating Ukrainians fleeing conflict by visiting the government website using the link button below: 

REGISTER NOW – HOMES FOR UKRAINE

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions can be found here from the government:

HOMES FOR UKRAINE SCHEME FAQs

We’ve received enquiries from many members of the public asking where they can make donations of clothes/goods/toys etc to help. Please contact enquiries@ucdoncaster.co.uk for more information on where and what is required.

This government guidance outlines important information for sponsors including responsibilities of sponsors and how sponsors may support their guests.

HOMES FOR UKRAINE SPONSOR GUIDANCE

Housing rights information can also be found here:

HOUSING RIGHTS INFORMATION

 

Applications for the scheme are made directly to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, and are sent on to the local authority for checks to be made with regards to safeguarding and accommodation.

The system is being constantly updated and we make regular checks throughout the day for any updates. Once an application is received by us, the customer will receive a phone call so that we can progress with the necessary safeguarding and accommodation checks, normally within 24 hours (excluding weekends)

The caller is also able to check the status of their registration on the portal on the government website where they originally applied.

We know many of our residents will be personally affected by the current situation. Whether that be worries and concerns for friends and family members in the region to anxiety about the implications from a wider perspective.

If you feel you need some extra support throughout this time, there’s lots of support available and people you can talk to. Find out about available mental health support.

Barnardo’s free helpline to support Ukrainian families

The conflict and ongoing violence in Ukraine has caused families to forcibly leave their homes, in search of safety, with many arriving in the UK.

In response to this, following discussion with the Association of Ukrainians in Great Britain, Barnardo’s has set up the Ukrainian Support Helpline to provide a holistic support service. The helpline is available to anyone fleeing the conflict in Ukraine.

Barnardo’s free helpline (0800 148 8586) is staffed by English, Ukrainian and Russian speakers, to offer support to children and families arriving in the UK from Ukraine.

The helpline is open Monday – Friday (10:00am – 8:00pm) and Saturday (10:00am – 3:00pm). Callers will be able to get help and advice on a range of issues.

A dedicated email address ukrainiansupport@barnardos.org.uk and webpage have been set up for those assisting with the Ukraine response.

More information:
https://www.barnardos.org.uk/what-we-do/helping-families/ukrainian-help

Many children may be scared by what they hear and see happening in Ukraine on TV, from friends or via social media. 

If you feel like it’s something you want to discuss with your children, here are some helpful links that can help:

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has laid emergency regulations so those arriving in the UK from Ukraine can access Universal Credit and jobs support immediately.

Ukrainians will also be eligible for Housing Benefit, Pension Credit, Personal Independence Payment, Child Disability Living Allowance and Carers Allowance, and Attendance Allowance.

Contributions-based Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), and Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) are also available for those Ukrainians who meet the criteria.

Translation services are available to help new arrivals with phone applications, with work coaches in DWP Jobcentres on hand to support people making claims online.

The regulations exempt those arriving from Ukraine, from the Habitual Residence Test and the Past Presence Test, meaning, if eligible, they can access Universal Credit, Housing Benefit, State Pension Credit and disability and carer benefits from day one.

These infographics provide a guide for guests on how the NHS works: 

Ukrainian version

Russian version

English version

Council tax discounts will not be affected if you sponsor and host Ukrainian guests in your home.

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