Although there has been an outpouring of support for refugees from Ukraine, the sheer number of refugees is straining some countries’ ability to provide each one with quality housing. Some refugees have relatives and friends abroad who have spare room, but many do not. Some are sufficiently well off that they can afford to rent apartments even if they are temporarily without income. But with a GDP of $3,700 per capita in 2020, many Ukrainian refugees are poor by Western standards and find themselves in very uncomfortable living conditions.
Luckily, with many countries allowing refugees from Ukraine to work, many of them should be able to support themselves after an initial transition time. Transitions are tough, however, and if you have spare room in your house or apartment, consider acting as a host for a refugee or a family of refugees. There are many websites matching Ukrainians who need shelter with people who are offering. It’s hard to know which ones Ukrainians are most likely to hear about, so unless you’re in Toulouse or the UK (in which case, see specific sections below), I encourage you to take the time to sign up for as many as you can until you find someone to host.
Websites where you can sign up to host refugees from Ukraine
- AirBnB (Airbnb will do all the security screening for you, with 24/7 support and you will also be protected by the Host Guarantee)
- UA SOS
- Housing for Refugees
- Ukraine Take Shelter
If you live in Toulouse
Fill out this form to offer lodging to refugees.
If you live in the UK
If you have a spare room in your house, you can get even more involved. If you live in the UK, the British government will give £350 tax free per month up to 1 year for those households welcoming Ukrainian refugees. You can check the details in the UK official website Homes for Ukraine.
For example, if you already know a Ukrainian or a Ukrainian family, you can sponsor them through the visa process. Alternatively, if you don’t know any fleeing Ukrainians, there are plenty of charities helping to connect potential hosts with refugees. The BBC has listed four charities working on this, including Refugees At Home, Room For Refugees, Shelter 4 Ukraine and Reset. More information can be found here too.
If you can’t be a host but would like to help with housing
You can donate using the Airbnb “Donate to Stays” to help displaced Ukrainians. Just click in the button “Donate now” in the left hand side of the Airbnb website (scroll down to see the button).
Finally, please share this information with your mates and family. The more people know about these opportunities, the more will help!
Thank you all for all your effort! And thanks to Juliana Carneiro for helping put this call to action together!
Ukraine will win!
PS If you’re looking for other ways to help, a list of past calls to action is posted here. Pick one today & do it!