Date Published: 16 May 2022
The number of Ukrainian guests arriving into Lincolnshire homes doubled to just over 300 in the fortnight up to May 11.
Under the Government’s Homes for Ukraine scheme that makes provision for hosts to make accommodation for fleeing refugees to come to the UK in search of safe sanctuary and temporary resettlement, Lincolnshire people have expressed immense generosity.
As of May 11, there were:
· 3,170 expressions of Interest by potential sponsors in Lincolnshire;
· 418 sponsor / visa matches underway for Lincolnshire sponsor pairings;
· 326 property inspections completed by District Councils in readiness for arrivals;
· 149 sponsors confirmed that their guest(s) had arrived;
· 303 people (guests) arrived and settling into their new circumstances in Lincolnshire.
Two weeks earlier, as at April 28, there were 150 guests being accommodated by 70 sponsors.
All of Lincolnshire’s councils and a range of public sector agencies and charitable sector organisations are working together as the Lincolnshire Resettlement Partnership to facilitate this.
As well as undertaking property inspections to ensure accommodation suitability and supporting with the national Disclosure and Baring Service (DBS) checks, they are involved in identifying sources of wellbeing support, language assistance an familiarisation with the area, advising on applications for healthcare and schools provision, handling the various payments and benefits claims and helping to co-ordinate the broader community response.
Additionally, there are further Ukrainians settling locally through the Families Scheme under which family members can be hosted directly by relatives already resident in the UK. These people do not qualify for the same level as support as under the Homes for Ukraine programme.
Those unable to offer up accommodation but who still want to express a ‘Big Lincolnshire Welcome’ can do so by contributing to an appeal led by the Lincolnshire Community Foundation which will help in meeting the specific, individual and more personal needs of the arriving Ukrainian guests where these are not provided for by statutory support or their hosts. Donations can be made at: https://www.totalgiving.co.uk/appeal/LincolnshireCF-Ukraine
Working with the Lincolnshire Voluntary Engagement Team (LVET), the partnership is looking to develop a greater understanding of the capacity for community and faith groups to support host families and the guests in ways which are sustainable, can facilitate resettlement and further extend the sense of a Big Lincolnshire Welcome. This will aid in the co-ordination of activity and ensure that all needs are met.
Voluntary, community sector and faith organisations are asked to provide LVET with information about what they are doing or proposing to do to provide support to refugees. Contact project development manager Emily Ward by emailing: email@example.com
Further information about the processes and support mechanisms can be found at www.Lincolnshire.gov.uk/Ukraine Regular checks are advised in the event of updates on national and local guidance.
Sponsoring households are asked to ensure they notify Lincolnshire County Council of their guest’s arrival as soon as possible, using the information provided to them in their Welcome Letter. This will facilitate the prompt processing of the associated payments and next-step arrangements to ensure the resettlement moves on smoothly.