A community refugee sponsorship scheme has been launched by the UK Home Office for community groups that want to become directly involved in supporting the resettlement of refugees. Community sponsors will be allocated a family fleeing conflict and will take on the responsibility to support the resettled family from the moment of arrival in the UK.
Lambeth Palace is the first community group to be approved to receive a refugee family, reports Focus on Refugees.
At the launch event, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said:
‘The Full Community Sponsorship Scheme presents churches and other civil society groups with the opportunity to provide sanctuary to those fleeing war-torn places.
‘Refugees, like all people, are treasured human beings made in the image of God who deserve safety, freedom and the opportunity to flourish.’
For the full report of the community refugee sponsorship scheme see the Focus on Refugees website.
The Catholic Bishops of England and Wales have called on parishes to get involved in the scheme. The Catholic Church, led by Caritas Salford, has been heavily involved in putting together the scheme according to the Catholic Church in England and Wales, which says that those involved have thanked Richard Harrington MP, and his team, for their hard work in bringing the scheme to fruition.
‘Catholics have been keen to get involved in helping to resettle refugees in the UK, responding to the situation with kindness and compassion as we are called to when confronted by those in need. However, that generosity needs to be channelled and we are therefore delighted that community sponsorship is being launched in the UK by the government’, commented Cardinal Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster.
For more details of the Catholic Church’s involvement see catholicnews.org.uk.