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Refugee Sponsorship programme Introduction

Refugee Sponsorship programme Introduction

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Source: Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment in collaboration with ThinkPlace 

Programme Vision.JPG

Source: Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment in collaboration with ThinkPlace

Why community-based sponsorship?

Establishing a community-based sponsorship programme can bring much added value and resources to reception and integration efforts. Programmes can build on the already existing active civil society with more long-term, committed and coordinated support from communities and citizens, while the state and authorities still retain the ultimate responsibility for receiving and integrating refugees.

Community-based sponsorship can therefore be seen as:

• A stepping-stone to build sustainable resettlement programmes and allow more refugees to access protection and durable solutions;

• A tool to facilitate faster and better integration prospects through engagement of citizens;

• A tool to increase public support for refugees and promote social cohesion;

• A way to mobilize additional capacities and resources to undertake resettlement and integration of refugees in a more effective way through a shared responsibility between government, civil society and individuals for a defined period.

Integration is not something that can be learnt from a textbook, it requires personal interaction and face to face meetings between people in the context of real life.

A Community sponsorship programme can embody these personal connections, and they can provide newly arrived refugees with a network, which is crucial when searching for jobs, for housing and for social inclusion.

Source: UNHCR

The Benefits of Community Sponsorship



This is, first and foremost, a tool for protecting refugees by providing them with an opportunity to rebuild their lives in safety and with dignity in a new country.


Community-based refugee sponsorship is an exciting way to increase the very limited opportunities for refugee resettlement around the world. 

As a member of a sponsorship group, you are an important part of this movement!

Relationship Building


Whether you yourself develop a strong bond with the refugee newcomers or not, the relationships they build in the new community are a key to their success in adapting.


Many sponsorship groups have positive experiences and even remain close friends with the refugee newcomers long after the sponsorship period ends.

It is an incredible opportunity to learn more about the diversity of perspectives and human experiences.

Volunteering and Awareness-Raising 

The privilege of many sponsorship group members means that there is an associated potential to improve the lives of those in different circumstances. Varying levels of awareness of power and privilege exist among us, and sponsorship can be a way to engage with this productively.

It may be intimidating, uncomfortable, unfamiliar, confusing, and so much more, but is an experience of growth at the individual and community levels.

Source: Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative


Community-based sponsorship programmes allow individuals to directly engage in refugee resettlement efforts. Sponsors commit to providing financial, emotional and resettlement support to help newly-arrived refugees integrate into life in a new country. 

The Canadian government has resettled more than 300,000* refugees through its Private Sponsorship of Refugees programme since it was introduced in 1979.

In addition, hundreds of communities across Canada have benefited by coming together to welcome privately sponsored refugees.

The success of Canada’s private sponsorship programme demonstrates that community-based sponsorship programs can build powerful bonds between sponsors and refugees; strengthen host communities; and foster positive attitudes towards refugees and resettlement.

Canada’s privately sponsored refugees also tend to have relatively early, positive integration and settlement outcomes, thanks in part to the social support they receive from sponsors.

Source: Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative

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