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Report shows unprecedented rise in hosting, and changing demographics of refugees seeking support

November 29, 2022 5:13 pm

The independent charity Refugees at Home, which matches those with a spare room to refugees and asylum seekers in need of somewhere to stay, has published its latest Impact Report for 2021/22.

The Report tracks data on hosting and placements and provides an insight into the demographics and circumstances of those needing support. It covers the period September 2021-August 2022, and is the charity’s first Impact Report to be published since Ukrainian refugees started arriving in the UK, following Russia’s invasion.

Among the key findings are that:

  • The number of hosts signing up to the charity has risen by 600%, from just under 2000 in 2021 to over 14,000.
  • The number of home visitors volunteering to undertake checks and assessments has grown from 100 to 800. This is particularly important because Refugees at Home uses experienced home visitors to assess hosts and homes before each placement is made.
  • The number of placements made has increased by 400% since 2021, and the charity has recently passed 250,000 placement nights – a quarter of a million nights when guests would otherwise have been homeless.
  • Although guests come from over 70 different countries, Ukrainians accounted for almost three quarters of the placements made during the year. Before that, most guests came from Eritrea, Syria, Iran and Sudan.
  • There has been a marked rise in the number of female guests, up from 24% in 2020-21 to 59% in 2021-22.
  • The age range of guests has increased. Before, most guests were aged 17-35, but this year the charity has seen more older and younger guests as families travel together, often with children and grandparents.

Lauren Scott, the charity’s Executive Director, said:  “The war in Ukraine has seen an absolutely unprecedented number of refugees needing a roof over their heads, and an equally unprecedented response from generous hosts.

“The British public’s response to the crisis shows that hosting can and should become an accepted part of the way we respond to those in need.  Our long-term goal is for hosting to be normalised, so that we can continue to support refugees and asylum seekers fleeing war and persecution wherever they come from.”

The Impact Report is available on the Refugees at Home website.

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