Want to help privately sponsor refugees? Here is how you can contribute:
- Transporting refugees in and around the city they settle in
- Providing housing, clothing, food, furniture, bus passes
- Enrolling refugees and their children in language education (ESL) and formal education
- Providing school fees and text books for refugee students
- Arranging translators and interpreters where required
- Helping refugees get copies and translations of documents notarized or certified
- Arranging initial medical checkup and ongoing medical, dental, and mental health appointments
- Helping refugees set up bank accounts, utilities, and phones
- Helping refugees apply for health care and Social Insurance Number cards
- Helping refugees apply for employment
- Helping refugees connect to local groups for social and professional development
- Arranging or providing child care for refugee parents
- Helping the refugee apply for child benefits
- Providing orientation with Canadian stores, banking services, transportation, etc.
- Providing emotional and social support by connecting the refugees with similar landed individuals in similar situations
- Donating money or goods to a refugee
- Identifying people in your community who can contribute items above.
You can help a refugee by doing the above in a Group of Five, or by helping a Group of Five. You can help without joining a Group of Five.
Groups of Five (G5) are five or more Canadian citizens or permanent residents, who are at least 18 years of age, live in the Canadian community where the refugees will settle, and have collectively arranged for the sponsorship of a refugee. The five individuals act as guarantors that the necessary support will be provided for the full duration of the sponsorship. Citizenship and Immigration Canada assesses individual contributions of group members to the sponsorship. The financial and non- financial aspects are considered collectively as well as the settlement plan before the sponsorship is approved. The group’s financial commitment must meet the levels established in CIC’s Sponsorship Cost Table.
Sponsoring groups agree to provide the refugees with care, lodging, settlement assistance and support for the duration of the sponsorship period. Normally, this is
12 months starting from the refugee’s arrival in Canada or until the refugee becomes self-sufficient, whichever comes first.
The sponsorship application kit provides details of how much financial support will likely be needed to meet the sponsorship obligations as well as advice on how to determine whether a group has sufficient funds. Although the cost of living varies from centre to centre across the country, the Sponsorship Cost Table and the In-Kind Deduction Table can help to estimate the annual settlement cost for sponsoring a refugee or refugee family. Sponsors are expected to provide a level of support that is at least equal to that of the prevailing rates for social assistance in the expected community of settlement.
The sponsoring group may establish a trust fund for the sponsorship but may not accept or require payment of funds from a refugee for submitting a sponsorship.