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Ukraine response

Ukraine response

Since the war in Ukraine started in February 2022, the people of Middlesbrough have opened their hearts and homes to those fleeing the country.

The government has set up two schemes to help people from Ukraine to find a safe home in the UK.

Ukraine Family Scheme


The government's Ukraine Family Scheme visa allows family members of British nationals, UK settled persons, and certain others to come to, or stay in, the UK. It's a free scheme, and people coming to the UK through this scheme will be able to live, work, and study in the UK.

The government regularly updates information and advice on the immigration information for Ukrainians in the UK, British nationals and their family members page on GOV.UK.

Homes for Ukraine


The Homes for Ukraine scheme is an opportunity to offer a home to those fleeing the war in Ukraine. To get involved, you must register your interest on GOV.UK.

Find out more about how Stronger Communities Middlesbrough supports people taking part in the Homes for Ukraine scheme.

Help for people arriving from Ukraine

The support which people arriving from Ukraine are entitled to from local councils depends on what kind of visa they have. Help and support is also available from other organisations.

The government has also produced a welcome guide for Ukrainians arriving in the UK, which is available in English, Ukrainian, and Russian. The Red Cross has also created a help guide for Ukrainian refugees in the UK.

STEP Ukraine


STEP Ukraine is an intensive, virtual, 12-week English language and employment programme for Ukrainians in the UK.

STEP Ukraine is designed to help you find meaningful employment in the UK and improve your English. It's completely free for all participants.

It is open to anyone from Ukraine who is over 18 and arrived in the UK on either the Homes for Ukraine Scheme, the Ukraine Family Scheme, or is on the Ukraine Extension Scheme.

Mobile phones

  • Vodafone - get a fee 6 month SIM card (you must be a charity applying on behalf on someone from Ukraine)
  • Three - get a free, 30 day pay as you go SIM card, with unlimited UK calls and texts, and free calls and texts from the UK to Ukraine
  • Virgin Media O2 - charges have been removed for data use in Ukraine, and the charges for calls and texts to and from Ukraine and the UK will be refunded

Free travel


National Rail offers the Ukrainian displaced persons travel scheme, which is valid across most rail, bus, and coach services in the UK. It allows your guest to travel for free from their arrival destination to your property, if you are unable to offer them transport.

Support in the community


The Barnardo's Ukrainian support helpline is available to anyone fleeing the conflict in Ukraine. It is staffed by English, Ukrainian, and Russian speaking staff, and offers support to children and families arriving in the UK from Ukraine. Full details, including opening hours and the phone number, are available on the Barnardo's Ukrainian support helpline page.

The Making Every Contact Count website has resources for professionals, volunteers, and community groups to offer health and wellbeing advice.

Help for children


With the situation developing in Ukraine, your children may be asking questions which you don't know how to answer.

Newsround, from the BBC's CBBC channel, has trusted videos and reports about the war in Ukraine which have been produced specifically for children. There is also a section offering advice for children if they are upset by the news.

Place2Be's educational psychologists have also shared advice about how to discuss war and conflict with children, and how to support them at this difficult and worrying time.

Frequently asked questions


We understand that you may have questions about the support offered to those fleeing the war in Ukraine, and our frequently asked questions page aims to answer them. We'll add new questions when they're asked.