13 June 2018

Sheffield is set to receive government funding to help new refugees into work and integrate into their new communities.

The funding for Sheffield means that there is now money to pay for two local authority project workers for a year to help new refugees from becoming homeless.

Local authorities across the country have developed plans to ease local pressures on housing, education and health services arising from recent migration providing benefits to the whole community.

At the moment, once a refugee has been given a legal right to be in the UK they only have 28 days to leave their temporary accommodation and then begin their new life. This is often when, without the right help and advice, they can present as homeless on eviction day putting pressure on council staff, on the voluntary sector and on themselves.

Councillor Jim Steinke, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and Community Safety said: “We’re pleased that we will now have two project workers for this important work. They will provide practical support and advice to new refugees at a time when they need it most.

“Their roles will be another way of supporting our local communities to help recent arrivals settle into their new communities and also provide extra services for the benefit of all.

“We know that refugees face particular challenges in settling into British life, so we are providing additional support to help them find work and somewhere to live as they begin life here in Sheffield.”

To help new refugees understand their new life in Sheffield, one project worker will provide them with housing help and support. This service will also advise those who have been refused to stay on what to do next including the option to return home.

The other worker will focus on giving housing advice and go to people in their homes before they leave their private asylum accommodation. They will advise on employment and welfare advice, and be based at the Sanctuary in Chapel Walk, Sheffield city centre.

Both of the project workers will work closely with partners, such as the private asylum housing provider, The Red Cross, The Sanctuary, housing services and Target Housing.

Sheffield has been chosen to be a national pilot for this work along with other local authorities. Bradford and Leeds are the other Yorkshire local authorities involved in the project.