New scheme invites you to name a refugee to support

Ukrainians hold a protest against the Russian invasion of Ukraine outside Downing Street, central Lo

New scheme to help fleeing Ukrainian refugees find a home in the UK - Credit: PA

Since the war in Ukraine began, I have been inundated with emails, calls and letters from people who want to offer their support. 
 
Village halls, churches, pubs and people’s homes have been filled with donations as people from across East Devon give what they can. It is a testament to local residents’ determination that donations from East Devon are being delivered to Ukraine and neighbouring countries. Arranging the logistics is no easy task and I know many people have worked incredibly hard to get every donation to where it’s needed.
 
Volunteers from local charities have been holding buckets outside shops and supermarkets to encourage donations to the Disasters Emergency Committee Ukraine Appeal. On my way to the Literary Festival on Saturday, I bumped into Richard from the Budleigh Lions who was out with his team of volunteers. He told me that people are being incredibly generous, and their new card reader made it even easier to donate.
 
I have also received countless offers from constituents wanting to open up their home to refugees from Ukraine. In response to offers from across the United Kingdom, I am pleased the government is launching the ‘Homes for Ukraine’ scheme, building on existing routes for families.
 
Under this scheme, you can name a refugee you want to support - someone you know, or who you find through a charity, church or social media. You can then apply together, and the application is vetted digitally, carefully assessing any security issues. 
 
The first refugees from Ukraine under this scheme will start arriving soon. They will be able to work, access support and services, and their accommodation will be provided by a sponsor in the community. Sponsors will need to offer a home for six months but will get £350 a month to help out with costs.
 
The full details of the scheme are available on homesforukraine.campaign.gov.uk and if you need help with your application, I’ll do what I can to assist you. We welcomed refugees from Afghanistan last year, and I know East Devon will provide a warm welcome to people from Ukraine too.