Ukraine: Hundreds of visas approved for refugees to stay in Fife

Hundreds of visas have been approved for Ukrainian refugees to stay with nominated households in Fife, according to new figures.

Tuesday, 3rd May 2022, 8:17 am

But this may not reflect the true numbers heading to the area, with thousands of the visas granted across the country sponsored by the Scottish Government, in a pledge to support refugees more quickly.

The Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme - also known as Homes for Ukraine - allows citizens to volunteer to house refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine.

Sponsors agree to offer accommodation for at least six months, and people coming here are allowed to live, work and study in the UK for up to three years.

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A woman who has fled war-town Ukraine holds a baby as she walks to board a train to transport them to Przemysl main train station after crossing the Polish Ukrainian border (Photo by Omar Marques/Getty Images)

Home Office data shows as of Tuesday (April 26), the number of visas issued for sponsors based in Fife stood at 201 – up from 37 when local figures ere first published on April 6.

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Local authority figures cover refugees who have already been linked with a named sponsor prior to their arrival.

But around 3,000 of the 5,200 visas issued in Scotland fall under the Scottish Government’s “super sponsorship” scheme, where applicants do not have to be matched with a named sponsor at the point of application.

It means local figures are likely to be an underestimate.

Across the UK as a whole, 51,300 visas had been issued by April 27, equating to around 69% of the 74,700 applications made to that date.

The proportion of people waiting has dropped since April 7, when just 12,500 applications had been issued from 43,600 applications.