Host Information Centre
Helping Your Ukrainian Guests
It sounds obvious, but spend some time getting to know your guest(s) and what’s important to them. Small things can offer comfort and help people feel settled so knowing things such as whether they have a faith, what their favourite foods and past-times are and being able to talk about family and friends etc. can make a difference.
Many people arriving from Ukraine will have little to no belongings with them. Aside from offering up space in your accommodation and ensuring they have the basics, such as enough food and essential supplies like toiletries, you can further help them in the following ways:
Collection from Airport/Port
While you are not required to, you can arrange to collect the person you are hosting from the airport or port when they arrive in the UK. If this is not possible, please let them know how best to reach your home from their arrival point.
Transport and Getting Around
The person or family you are hosting is unlikely to be familiar with the layout of your local area or how to get around easily. Some practical advice on things like getting to and from your home, where the local shops are, and where to catch buses and trains will go a long way.
Help obtaining a UK SIM card and phone number
Ukrainian individuals will often arrive without a UK mobile number. It is important to help source a SIM card as soon as possible. You can obtain free SIM Cards from British Red Cross, or your guest can use part of their Interim Payment to facilitate this.
Registering with GP
Registration with a local GP as soon as possible, even if they are not ill, is a crucial part of helping someone to settle in the UK. We advise you to help the individuals or family you are hosting to do this.
Link to Health & Wellbeing article 9070
Registering with Dentist
In addition to registering with a GP, it is advisable for the person or family you are hosting to register with a dentist.
It is recognised that some dental practices may not have capacity for NHS patients.
The options here include:
- contact a few local NHS practices and enquire
- contact your local health REGISTERboard via their helpline (NHS 111 Wales, Services Near You: Dental Services), as they keep a list of practices
- if an emergency, contact NHS Direct Wales on 0845 4647
Link to Health & Wellbeing article 9070
Opening a Bank Account
It is important that people seeking sanctuary from Ukraine open a bank account as soon as possible. It would be useful to let them know that there are a range of banks they can choose from, including online-only providers. To open a bank account, a person will usually need to show a form of identification such as a passport or a driver’s licence or a recognised identity card as well as proof of address.
Some banks are more flexible about the proof of address requirement so it can be worth doing some research and shopping around. Their Lead Worker can also provide a letter of verification if that is required by the bank.
Completing a Universal Credit Application
If the person or family members you are hosting are old enough to work, they will be able to apply to receive Universal Credit. During the application process, people should ask about advance payments if they need money sooner than 5 weeks. Many arrivals will be eligible for this but advance payments need to be requested.
Supporting with access to Education
All children and young people arriving under the Ukrainian schemes have the right to access education and childcare whilst in the UK.
Access to education will be key for children, both in terms of ensuring that their education is disrupted for as short a time as possible, but also to ensure that they feel welcome and begin to settle into their new communities.
People seeking sanctuary from Ukraine have the right to work as soon as they have been given a visa to stay in the UK from Ukraine.
Support for people from Ukraine seeking employment is managed by the UK Government at the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). DWP Work Coaches will signpost individuals to suitable employability and skills support.
DWP Work Coaches will undertake individual assessments. People from Ukraine will have access to a range of employment and skills support that is tailored to their individual needs.
The dominant languages in Ukraine are Ukrainian and Russian. You should not expect your guests to be able speak or read English. Free online translation services may be helpful in communicating in the early phases of a match; however, users should note that these are not always accurate.
Where the guest is accessing public services, interpreters may be required. When accessing Health services, NHS providers have a duty to provide interpretation. Department for Work and Pensions can usually source interpretation services when requested too. Unfortunately, not all services will have interpretation services available but it is always worth asking.
Here are some basic phrases that might be handy in the first few days and weeks:
- Hi — Привіт / Pryvit
- Hello – Добрий день / Dobryi den’
- Excuse me — Вибачте / vybachte
- How are you? — Як справи? / Yak spravy
- Very good — Дуже добре / Duzhe dobre
- You are welcome (Будь ласка) / Bud’ laska
- Thanks — Дякую / Dyakuyu
- Goodbye, formally — До побачення / Do pobatchennya
If your guest(s) has limited use of English, then you can consider:
- Online translation services and Apps e.g. iTranslate, Google Translate, SayHi, TripLingo etc.
- When accessing public services, ask for an interpreter to be provided
- English as a Second Language - Free Adult ESOL classes are available at Learning Pembrokeshire Community Centres around the county and online.
Website: Adult Learning
Freephone: 0808 100 3302
For initial enquires and referrals:
or to discuss in more detail
- Language cards – These can be found online and can help with basic greetings and learning essential phrases
The Community Hub is recruiting language volunteers who may be able to assist in some circumstances. Contact 01437 776301 or firstname.lastname@example.org