Refugees at Home is a UK based charity aiming to connect those with a spare room in their home with asylum seekers and refugees in need of accommodation.

Please get in touch if you are interested and want to know more, would like to offer to host, or want to find a place to stay.

The number of people we have put in a bed for a night rather than leave them on a park bench or night bus:

(If you just see the word "Rows: 1", please tap on it to reveal.)


What we do

Since we started up in October 2015 we have made nearly 500 placements.


To find out more about how Refugees at Home works, please read our FAQ


 

Here are some of the ways that you can get involved.

Hosting

Refugees At Home is looking for volunteer hosts who would welcome an asylum-seeker or refugee into their homes. All you need is a spare room and a generous spirit.

Hosting

Home visitors

If you are or have been a social worker, health visitor, district nurse, mental health practitioner or similar, might you be willing to visit potential hosts in your area? Or do you know someone who might do this?

Home Visiting

Guests

If you are a refugee or asylum-seeker in UK (or know someone) who is in need of a home, we may be able to connect you with someone offering a place to stay.


Enquiries

Stories

Here's some of our news

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Naomi Bourne is Running a Marathon for Refugees at Home

Posted on Friday 21st April, 2017

Naomi Bourne, one of our hosts, has set up a Just Giving fundraising page to raise funds for R@H in the marathon. Please support both Naomi and Refugees at Home in one easy click! Thank you, Naomi!

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Basil is fundraising for Refugees At Home

Posted on Tuesday 18th April, 2017

Basil Owen has started this fundraising page on JustGiving. Thank you Basil! Money raised will be used to help hosts who cannot otherwise afford it to feed their hosts or pay for their travel.

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Travers Smith receive more recognition for work with us

Posted on Sunday 27th November, 2016

Travers Smith, who do so much to support us with legal advice and administration, have won another prestigious award, the Legal Week 2016 CSR/Diversity Initiative of the Year. We couldn’t manage without them and we are delighted that they get recognition for their work. Congratulations to them.

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Oldest and Youngest Hosts Meet

Posted on Monday 24th October, 2016

At the first meeting of our newly formed Kingston hub, our oldest host (aged 94) meets our youngest host (aged 19). Such wonderful people.

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Travers Smith’s work for Refugees at Home wins top pro bono award

Posted on Saturday 15th October, 2016

Travers Smith LLP is delighted to have won the ‘Law in the Community/Pro Bono Award’ category at the 2016 Halsbury Legal Awards for its work supporting Refugees at Home. Refugees at Home first came to Travers Smith as a group of individuals and has, with the firm’s help, become a charitable organisation that connects those with […]

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The Refugees At Home team

Posted on Saturday 3rd September, 2016

… met up with prospective hosts at Cargo at the Arcola Theatre, London in July 2016. Look out for more opportunities to meet the team…  

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Working Together

Posted on Saturday 3rd September, 2016

We are now full members of NACCOM – the network of hosting groups in the UK. We work with Housing Justice as part of London Hosting Network.

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Surrey Hub

Posted on Saturday 3rd September, 2016

Our first “hubs” are up and running in Surrey and West London, and we are hoping to roll them out wherever we have a group of hosts in one area. This is what we are saying about them: New hosts often ask about the support they might expect from Refugees At Home. Each one of course […]

Testimonials

Here's what some of our hosts and guests have said about Refugees at Home

Guest AR

Posted on Monday 10th April, 2017

Cambridge is beautiful and Dave is a very nice guy. I think I am in love with Cambridge now. Thanks for bringing me up here at this difficult time. May the god return you with more beautiful success and happiness.

GL, Host

Posted on Sunday 2nd April, 2017

Hi RAH team, Just emailing as I think when we registered we had billions of conditions like “Must be female, must speak impeccable English, mustn’t need hosting over the weekend, must come accompanied by pink flying unicorn”. Well, since then we’ve hosted Muhammad and we are now saying BOLLOCKS TO ALL CONDITIONS. If somebody needs emergency […]

Referrer LS

Posted on Thursday 30th March, 2017

Thank you so much again for your help (I feel like I’ve said that a thousand times these months – thank god refugees@home exists!) …. Well I really mean it: you are the best team ever! What you are all doing is amazing and so so needed, you are literally saving lives and many of my […]

EB – Host

Posted on Tuesday 21st March, 2017

I think your service is wonderful! 🙂

H, Guest

Posted on Thursday 9th March, 2017

Hello I have met T█████ and H█████ , I am at their home . They are lovley and nice . I just want to say for you thank you . You are really amazing group .

P, host, London

Posted on Wednesday 8th March, 2017

To anyone thinking about hosting…..I have had guests in my spare room since August. I cannot imagine life without a guest. Go for it!

JS, host

Posted on Thursday 2nd March, 2017

I am endlessly blown away by what an impressive outfit Refugees at Home is and it’s hard to believe the organisation is so new given all that you do.

L referrer, London

Posted on Monday 20th February, 2017

….it was such a huge relief to come across your organisation and then to find you so efficient and willing to help…When H reported back how kind and hospitable K had been and what a ‘beautiful family’ they were, I finally felt I could relax again…Refugees at Home is such a great idea…Keep up the good […]

L, referrer, London

Posted on Saturday 18th February, 2017

J – he is so very happy and relieved to be safe and staying with such lovely people as A and D are. I had been meaning to write to you and not yet got to it, so this is to thank you very much indeed, it’s literally life-changing for J.

L, referrer, London

Posted on Thursday 16th February, 2017

To everyone who helped finding a place to stay for M, Thank you thank you thank you a million times. We went to his new house today as he will spend his first night there and everything was perfect. A and I could not have been better hosts and they made M feel so comfortable and […]

Patrick, referrer, Cardiff

Posted on Tuesday 14th February, 2017

Just a quick note to say thanks for finding the wonderful J. He’s an amazing host and has taken on supporting A – which releases us to do other stuff. A is feeling much more stable and positive as a result of our work.

L, Home Visitor

Posted on Friday 10th February, 2017

To receive your email and find that both my hosts have guests makes me feel like I am making a small difference – thank you. Thank you to the R@H team for supporting home assessors, hosts and guests. Keep going please and look after yourselves. Somewhere scared parents and families are grateful for you all.

Thank you from a Sudanese guest

Posted on Wednesday 8th February, 2017

As you said in your first reply to my inquiry email , you said that ” will do our best to help”! Your best was so quick & positive that you connected me with the family in Finchely. They invited me for dinner last Monday evening, so as to know each other. To be honest with […]

B, our youngest host

Posted on Sunday 1st January, 2017

It has been exactly one year since I made the decision to host. I remember it well, New Years Eve 2015 I spent my evening reading news articles about the refugees drowning in the Med trying to reach safety and I thought I just had to do something… I had a spare room (although at the […]

G, Home Visitor

Posted on Sunday 18th December, 2016

This home visiting is like being part of a glorious humanitarian dating agency!

S, guest.

Posted on Wednesday 14th December, 2016

I moved at C’s place on Monday. She and her family are lovely. I feel so safe and comfortable here. Am truly grateful to you for your help in bringing me to a safe shelter. Wish you and your team a wonderful festive season 🙂

Mrs AB, Host, Croydon, Surrey

Posted on Sunday 4th December, 2016

We’ve hosted since April and I’d recommend it to anyone! Guests and hosts quickly become like family and we have lots of laughs – chatting about cultural differences and cooking food for each other to try. I know if it was me in their shoes and in their country that I’d want to be helped by […]

Jodie & Mark, hosts, North London

Posted on Sunday 4th December, 2016

We host emergency guests and, in doing so, get to meet a brilliant and eclectic mix of people from all walks of life, many from unfathomable hardship. Our guests are invariably polite, grateful and interesting which means that we are able, even with our limited means, to feel like we are making a difference.

Mr AM, guest, London

Posted on Saturday 3rd December, 2016

I stay with very nice family for five months in Dorking they make me feel like I am among my family they offer the most help they can and support I feel very thankful for them ,

Ms S, host, Stockport Manchester

Posted on Saturday 3rd December, 2016

R@H approach their task with great understanding and professionalism, so that hosting is successful and immensely rewarding as a result. We can help our guests start to find their feet, but if they were able to travel without having to spend much of their funds on it, their ability to become full members of society would […]

 

Media

We've been featured on the BBC TV and Radio 4, and across the press and social media

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Syrian Refugee Pays Tribute To British Welcome

Posted on Saturday 8th April, 2017

Ahmad al-Rashid fled Syria in 2015 as the civil war there intensified – this is his heartwarming tale of how warmly he’s been welcomed by the British people he’s met since then. Ahmad was live in studio on the day that Donald Trump ordered airstrikes against Syrian bases, in response to the terrible chemical weapons attack […]

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Don’t bank on any help starting your new life

Posted on Sunday 2nd April, 2017

Taking in an Iranian refugee was a simple process for Simon Neville. Opening an account for him was anything but I have never considered myself a particularly selfless person. I regularly tell beggars I have no change, I can’t remember the last time I bought a Big Issue and I have taken to telling charity collectors […]

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Taking in refugee is like having a friend round, says peer

Posted on Saturday 11th March, 2017

When Lord Bassam of Brighton and his wife agreed to take in a Syrian refugee as a lodger last year they braced themselves for culture clashes and misunderstandings. But after the arrival of Riam, a 28-year-old student, their biggest problem was a little more prosaic: she didn’t like cats — and the Labour peer has two […]

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Creating an Airbnb for refugees is more complicated than it sounds

Posted on Saturday 18th February, 2017

Activists welcome Airbnb’s commitment to house 100,000 refugees, but they say finding the right hosts will take more than an algorithm After President Donald Trump halted the flow of refugees coming into the US through an executive order last month, Airbnb came out with a strong response: the home-sharing startup committed to providing free short-term housing […]

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Baking, bikes and beds help ease trauma for refugees

Posted on Saturday 18th February, 2017

The government has abandoned thousands of child refugees who had hoped to find sanctuary in Britain. While Amber Rudd, the home secretary, was closing the door on the so-called Dubs children, however, a loose network of volunteers and small charities has been working to assist them and refugees who are already in Britain. Many volunteers, inspired […]

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What every home needs: a smiling refugee

Posted on Saturday 11th February, 2017

With my girls away at university I opened my house to a young man from Darfur, and it’s changed my life as much as his. Over Christmas I read in a newspaper about an organisation called Refugees at Home, which places homeless refugees with host families. Since I was feeling seasonably charitable and I rattle around […]

ITVLondon

Posted on Wednesday 1st February, 2017

A piece on our guest Karim getting family reunification and a flat in Elmbridge.

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Sky News at Christmas

Posted on Monday 26th December, 2016

Real Christmas spirit: Meet those who open their homes to refugees

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Leafy Surrey town opens its homes to refugees

Posted on Saturday 24th December, 2016

Leafy Surrey town opens its homes to refugees Dorking residents inspired to life-changing response to migration crisis “If they ask, say you’re my nephew,” Constance Nash advised the young Syrian man staying with her, in case he encountered an unfriendly neighbour. Ms Nash has a lot of foreign guests this year at her home in Dorking, […]

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BBC SE Today

Posted on Saturday 3rd December, 2016

A mostly sympathetic article on BBC SE Today on 2/12/2016, somewhat marred by the MP telling us that refugees are definitively not welcome.  

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British Volunteer Hosts Welcome Refugees Into Their Homes and Lives

Posted on Thursday 10th November, 2016

Amid a hostile climate for refugees in the U.K., ordinary citizens are plugging gaps in the asylum system. Judith Vonberg reports on Refugees at Home, a volunteer initiative connecting Britons offering spare rooms with asylum seekers desperately in need of a bed. LONDON – The Zig Zag cafe is nestled between an art shop and a […]

 

Newsletters

The newsletters we have sent out over the last months

Hosts – March 2017

Posted on Friday 31st March, 2017

Dear Hosts, To start on a high: we have charitable status! It came through, with no warning, just after we sent out the last newsletter. Apparently it was granted in December with no questions asked – which is most unusual – and then took a little while to wend its way to us. So that means […]

Home Visitors – March 2017

Posted on Friday 31st March, 2017

Dear Home Visitors, Welcome to our March – and it seems Spring – newsletter. Closure of the Winter Night Shelters Last year we were too small and new for the annual closure of the winter night shelters to impact on us at all: we hadn’t heard of them and vice versa. What a difference a year […]

Supporters – March 2017

Posted on Friday 31st March, 2017

Dear Supporters, To start on a high: we have charitable status! It came through, with no warning, just after we sent out the last newsletter. Apparently it was granted in December with no questions asked – which is most unusual – and then took a little while to wend its way to us. So that means […]

Home Visitors – Feb 2017

Posted on Wednesday 8th February, 2017

Dear Home Visitors, I know it’s rather late to wish you all a Happy New Year but life at R@H Towers has been a tad busy – which is why this newsletter is a little later than planned. Starting with A Good Read, this article by one of our hosts – indeed by one who said […]

Hosts – Feb 2017

Posted on Wednesday 1st February, 2017

Dear Home Visitors, I know it’s rather late to wish you all a Happy New Year but life at R@H Towers has been a tad busy – which is why this newsletter is a little later than planned. Starting with A Good Read, this article by one of our hosts – indeed by one who said […]

Supporters – Feb 2017

Posted on Wednesday 1st February, 2017

Dear Supporters, Starting with A Good Read: this article by one of our hosts – indeed by one who said she was only prepared to host women – appeared in The Times this weekend.  We are standing by our laptops for a flurry of host applications, and hoping that at least some Times readers live in […]

Home Visitors – Dec 2016

Posted on Wednesday 7th December, 2016

Dear Home Visitors, Our first Christmas, and our opportunity to say thank you for everything you have done for our guests throughout 2016. Actually, what you have done to help the over 160 asylum-seekers and refugees we have hosted, may be one of the best things that has happened this year. With the festive season fast […]

Hosts – Dec 2016

Posted on Thursday 1st December, 2016

Dear Hosts, Our first Christmas, and our opportunity to say thank you for everything you have done for our guests throughout 2016. Actually, what you have done to help the over 160 asylum-seekers and refugees we have hosted, may be one of the best things that has happened this year. With the festive season fast approaching, […]

Home Visitors – Nov 2016

Posted on Sunday 6th November, 2016

Dear Home Visitors, We are well on the way to winter and therefore demand for hosting is high. The odd night in a park doesn’t have the charm it might have during the summer, it’s too beastly cold. I know we have contacted many of you recently to carry out new visits or to check about […]

Hosts – Nov 2016

Posted on Tuesday 1st November, 2016

Dear Hosts, Here we are well into the autumn and, with the clocks going back, our potential guests have ever more need of your hospitality. A night or two in the park might not be the end of the world in the summer but there is a real nip in the air now and it is […]

Home Visitors – Sep 2016

Posted on Monday 5th September, 2016

Dear Home Visitors, Welcome back after the summer. We did have a slight lessening of activity in August – partly because many hosts were away. Fortunately, so were a number of referrers. But we are certainly in full swing now and have another season to add to those we are learning about in our first year: […]

Hosts – September 2016

Posted on Thursday 1st September, 2016

Dear Hosts, Welcome back after the summer. We did have a slight lessening of activity in August – partly because many of us: hosts and admin, were away.  Fortunately, so were a number of referrers. But we are certainly in full swing now. We already know to be prepared for Easter, Ramadan and August, now we […]

Home Visitors – August 2016

Posted on Thursday 4th August, 2016

Dear Home Visitors, It has been so frantically busy at Refugees At Home HQ that we have neglected you shamefully with no newsletter recently. At last, the inbox is empty so I can bring you up to date. We now have 100 Home Visitors on the books – not all active  – but many of you […]

Hosts – August 2016

Posted on Monday 1st August, 2016

Dear Hosts, We have been so busy at Refugees At Home HQ recruiting hosts and making placements that we haven’t managed to update you all recently with all that has happened. We now have over 400 hosts and potential hosts on the books who we think may be interested in hosting at some point.  94 of […]

Hosts – June 2016

Posted on Wednesday 1st June, 2016

Dear Hosts, Time for our second newsletter, now that it’s really summer. It has been a very busy month. We have made nearly 80 placements so far, which tells you a little but not the whole story. A placement could be of one person or three (though more usually the former) it could be for a […]

Home Visitors – May 2016

Posted on Monday 23rd May, 2016

Dear Home Visitors, The number of Home Visitors has grown quite fast – to 67 so far, and many of you have now done your first Home Visit. Of course, some of you have done five or six! We do still need more HVs particularly in Yorkshire, Bristol and London. Please ask your friends and colleagues… […]

Hosts – May 2016

Posted on Sunday 1st May, 2016

Dear Hosts, The Refugees At Home core team thought it about time we updated you all with where we have got to now. It’s three months since we rolled out this group to help refugees and asylum-seekers by matching them with generous hosts – you guys – for a shorter or longer period while they sort […]

Home Visitors – April 2016

Posted on Saturday 2nd April, 2016

Dear Home Visitors, The number of Home Visitors is growing rapidly: we have had about a dozen responses to a brief article I placed in Community Practitioner magazine – so a huge welcome to you all. We now have about 50 people who have volunteered to be Home Visitors with Refugees At Home. Of course, if […]

Home Visitors – March 2016

Posted on Tuesday 1st March, 2016

Dear Home Visitors, First to say a huge thank you for all you have done so far in enabling Refugees At Home to get going properly in the last month or so. Some of you have made four or more visits already but we know we have yet to ask some of you further away from […]