Donate Twitter Facebook

Supporting Ukraine

Supporting Ukraine

The situation in Ukraine is devastating and urgent. Civil society organisations are on the frontline in the country, in its neighbours helping refugees, and around the world lobbying governments and raising funds.


Information for Charities and community groups 

National charity NCVO has shared a helpful blog on how charities and civil society can support Ukraine. The war is also likely to create impacts on UK charities and the blog also outlines these and how you can prepare. 

The latest thoughts from NCVO are 'Mobilising the public response to war in Ukraine through partnership and collaboration'.

Organisations should follow NCSC advice and act on improving their resilience with the cyber threat heightened. New online learning helps small organisations get to grips with cyber security. 

The Charity Commission has also issued a statement on the Ukraine crisis and its implications for charities.Guidance for charities and trustees responding to the crisis in Ukraine and is raising awareness of the risk of sexual exploitation and abuse and sexual harassment of those in need of assistance. 

ACRE has produced a briefing Support for Ukrainian refugees – the role of village halls.


How you can help - donations 

The current advice is to donate money if you can, which can make more of a difference more quickly than donating goods which need to be transported. On 1 March the Polish Embassy requested that people send funds to recognised organisations, but don't send material goods to the country.  As the Ukrainian people face growing conflict and violence, they will need donations that will go towards humanitarian aid, psychological support and medical supplies for paramedics and doctors on the frontlines.

DEC (Disasters Emergency Committee) charities and their local partners are in Ukraine and in neighbouring countries providing food, water, shelter and medical assistance. You can help by donating to their Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal. Large charities are pooling their resources together and the UK government pledged £20 million in match funding. They have the expertise and experience to help in these situations through trusted channels. The British Red Cross emergency appeal to raise funds for food, medicines and basic medical supplies, shelter and water is now part of DEC Ukraine Appeal.

There are also a range of organisations that you can make a donation to, but the Charity Commission and Fundraising Regulator have urged people to ‘give safely’ to registered charities helping and supporting those affected.

If you are looking for other ways to help London Plus are updating a document of useful links and resources (some are London based but many are national or international) 

Two Ridings Community Foundation have shared information about directly supporting Ukrainian community foundations to support local people & communities as they need it

Ripon City of Sanctuary shared some helpful local advice on practical ways we can best help, based on their experience. They say that UK charities cannot cope with unwanted donations and many are still struggling with donations made in response to the Afghan airlift crisis last August. We don't know how many people will travel to our area, and many may choose to go to areas where there is already a bigger Ukrainian community, or where they have existing connections. 

Our local Harrogate District of Sanctuary and Ripon City of Sanctuary share when specific items are needed for families locally. Harrogate Clothes Bank accepts good quality clothes which are available free of charge for people in need, who can then choose items they want. 

The Ukrainian Institute has also shared some ways you can support Ukraine.

100 Ukrainian leaders of civil society organizations have come together to urge leaders around the world to act on six urgent appeals.


How you can help - offering a home to refugees 

On 14 March the Government announced the Homes for Ukraine Scheme for individuals, charities, community groups and businesses to volunteer accommodation. There are some FAQs on the Government website and some very helpful advice from Nicola at Ripon City of Sanctuary 

The Homes for Ukraine scheme is open for applications from Ukrainians with a named eligible sponsor in the UK. This factsheet, which has been translated into Ukrainian and Russian, explains how Ukrainians can apply to the scheme before arriving in the UK.

The Citizen’s Advice website has been updated with advice on Bringing people to the UK

Some questions still remain about how people will be safeguarded and supported. Details of the hosting programme are being worked on by the government with local authorities. It is important to make sure arrangements are safe for everyone, working through trusted networks, which can time to get right. 

This government Homes for Ukraine: sponsor guidance outlines important information for sponsors including responsibilities of sponsors and how sponsors may support their guests. There is also Homes for Ukraine: government guidance for councils. 

City of Sanctuary have a helpful webpage Things to consider before applying to sponsor a refugee.

Reset Communities and Refugees is helping register and match refugees from Ukraine with sponsors across the UK. They’re a non-profit organisation set up in 2018 to help communities welcome refugees. They are accepting applications from those who have fled from Ukraine who wish to come to the UK on their Homes for Ukraine website. Other organisations such as Sanctuary Foundation are working in partnership.

Reset has created a Sponsor Toolkit for people wishing to welcome through the Homes for Ukraine programme. This toolkit is designed to provide an overview of the ways sponsors can support those arriving through the scheme.

Refugees at Home is a UK charity which connects those with a spare room in their home to refugees and asylum seekers in need of somewhere to stay. They need Home Visitor volunteers with a professional background in making home assessments - such as GPs, social workers, carers and occupational therapists.

You can also offer a spare room through Room for Refugees.

If you are a host who is already matched, you can connect with Ripon City of Sanctuary for latest information, peer-to-peer support for both hosts and guests, preparation in advance of arrival and support post-arrival. Email

Harrogate District of Sanctuary have put together some useful links to help with sponsoring and hosting. If you are hosting in the Harrogate and Knaresborough area you can contact the charity to help co-ordination and support for guests when they arrive.

Harrogate Ukraine Support Network - A network of individuals and groups committed to providing some support to Ukrainian refugees in our district as well as the families that might be sponsoring or supporting them. The network is arranged by Harrogate District of Sanctuary and meets at The Friends’ Meeting House in Harrogate. The next meeting is on 8 June 2022,  2.30 p.m. and anyone interested is welcome.

Harrogate District of Sanctuary have set up a weekly drop-in and support meeting in Harrogate for Ukrainians and for sponsors, and those seeking support to become sponsors. Refreshments will be available. There will be opportunities to chat, meet others and share ideas and contacts, and other services will be offered depending on what people want.

The Harrogate Friends of Ukraine Facebook page for Sponsors, Ukrainians and supporters to share information has been set up by Harrogate District of Sanctuary in partnership with Community Links.

Knaresborough drop in sessions - Chain Lane Community Hub & Community Links are running a free weekly support & friendship group (Weds 7-9pm at the Hub) for displaced Ukrainian families, their sponsors & people interested in sponsoring. There is also a Knaresborough Friends of Ukraine Facebook page

A Ukrainian Refugee Support Network in Knaresborough run by Knaresborough Connectors is for both refugees and hosts. You can register here.

The Ripon City of Sanctuary group has set out how it supports British hosts and their Ukrainian guests. This includes face-to-face meetings to help get up to speed with a range of issues around hosting.

If you know anyone who is hosting Ukrainian guests or thinking of hosting, please encourage them to get in touch with the local support networks above. 

Local Russian/Ukrainian speakers and anyone with ESOL qualifications/language teaching expertise are needed. If you are able to volunteer please get in touch with us at HADCA and we will help connect you.  

Vita Network have created a collection of practical and downloadable resources for refugees, hosts, host-communities, healthcare professionals, and advocates.

NACCOM has produced an updated series of resources for people and organisations interested in hosting refugees.

Dr Gill Martin, a psychotherapist specialising in refugee mental health, has compiled a very useful list of Host Guidelines shared on the City of Sanctuary website.

Solace has launched two new free e-learning courses aimed at those who want to improve their support for the emotional wellbeing of asylum seekers and refugees.

Three Cultural Sensitivity Sheets have been produced by HealthProm as part of the VCS Emergencies Partnership; one in English, one in Ukrainian and one in Russian.

We'll add further details when available and there is also helpful information for host sponsors on the North Yorkshire County Council website.

Information and Support for Ukrainians coming to our district

Government advice on moving to the UK if you’re from Ukraine
Check what you need to do before you travel to the UK and what to do after you arrive.

Welcome: a guide for Ukrainians arriving in the UK
This government guide is for Ukrainians arriving in the UK, including specific information for those arriving on the Homes for Ukraine scheme.
It covers what you need to know in your first few days, getting used to life in the UK including how to find a home, access essential public services, healthcare, find work and childcare and education services.

On the North Yorkshire County Council website there is the British Red Cross information leaflet for Ukrainians arriving in the UK and a  welcome pack for Ukrainians arriving in the UK in Ukrainian and Russian.

Barnardo’s Ukrainian Free Support Helpline for anyone fleeing the conflict in Ukraine.  
0800 148 8586  
The Helpline is open: 
Monday – Friday 10.00am-8.00pm  
Saturday 10.00am-3.00pm  
Therapy with a qualified psychotherapist, advice on a range of issues and practical support. All services include access to interpreters in Ukrainian and Russian.

The British Red Cross has an information page for people from Ukraine, including the free British Red Cross support line:  0808 196 3651 (10am - 6pm daily with support line interpreters).

The Advice Ukraine Project UK  is a group of volunteer legal professionals with immigration and asylum expertise. They are providing a free service to connect Ukrainian citizens (and others fleeing Ukraine) with free legal advice on UK immigration, visas and asylum from qualified and regulated lawyers.

The charity Solace provides mental health and wellbeing support for refugees and asylum seekers in Yorkshire and Humber region.

‘United for Ukraine’ has been set up by businesses and other partners across the North of England. This initiative provides a searchable list of vacancies for Ukrainian nationals with employers who have committed to providing good job opportunities in a supportive environment.

People fleeing Ukraine and arriving in the UK can claim benefits immediately.

Benefits for resettled Ukrainians - CPAG information about the rights to benefits for resettled Ukrainians escaping the war and the potential impact on the benefits and other entitlements of ‘hosts’ of resettled Ukrainians. 

The Citizens Advice website has a section on immigration information.

Refugee Council Banking Guide for Refugees for people who have recently been granted refugee status in the UK (in English)

Free online courses for refugees from The Open University, including learning English to information about working as a translator.

Charity Translators - Ukraine-related language support (including volunteer opportunities).

Free Ukrainian Phrasebook from Lonely Planet.

Time to be Out supports LGBT+ Asylum Seekers and Refugees

Ukrainian Displaced Persons Travel Scheme
To help Ukrainian nationals travelling to the UK, most public transport operators, including National Rail, are offering free onward travel to get to a safe place.  The offer is valid across all National Rail train operators, light rail services and the majority of bus and coach services, with 48 hours from arrival in the UK to complete the journey.

Emergency support put in place for people fleeing Ukraine and entering the UK with their pets.

Connecting Opportunities, part of Migration Yorkshire, welcomes all new migrants living in Harrogate district who have arrived in the UK within the last 10 years and do not have British citizenship. They help people who have permission to work in the UK but are not in work. They can help with developing the skills needed to gain employment in the UK, feeling part of the community and increasing confidence and well-being. Connecting Opportunities has helped 100s of migrants to improve their confidence through ESOL, wellbeing, employment and mentoring/befriending support.

A drop-in for Ukrainians is held from 9am-11am every Monday- Thursday in term-time, downstairs at Holy Trinity Church Ripon. The cost is 50p per session to cover hot drinks. This is for Ukrainian peer support only, although once a week there will be a British person present to help with signposting and anything else that may come up. 

There are also drop-ins for Ukrainian guests and for hosts in Harrogate and Knaresborough, which are listed in the section above. 

Harrogate & Knaresborough Toy Library is offering refugees the opportunity of a year's free membership to borrow toys and free entry to play sessions.

Our searchable Where To Turn Community Information Directory for Harrogate district contains hundreds of local charity services, support groups and community activities. Both Harrogate District of Sanctuary and Ripon City of Sanctuary will be able to help with bringing people together for peer support.   

We'll add further details when available and more will also be added to the North Yorkshire County Council website where there is information relating to North Yorkshire in Ukrainian, including Children & Families Services, Early Years and Schools.


Keeping informed and getting involved

The Refugee Council is a UK based organisation working with refugees and asylum seekers, providing support and advice to refugees and asylum seekers, as well as support for other refugee and asylum seeker organisations. There are many ways you can get involved.  The Refugee Council has put together a page of support and information for people affected by the crisis in Ukraine.

Refugee Action has supported refugees and people seeking asylum since 1981. 

Migration Yorkshire produce migration news updates and ways you can support newcomers to our region.  

Our local members of the City Of Sanctuary network share information and ways to help on social media. City of Sanctuary have produced their own helpful guide with 8 ways you can support the people of Ukraine.  

Please follow and support our local Harrogate District of Sanctuary and Ripon City of Sanctuary. Ripon City of Sanctuary have shared a blog which gives a few Dos and Don'ts for supporting refugees, raising awareness, campaigning and not re-inventing the wheel.  


Following the advice from Ripon City of Sanctuary we made contact with Andrew Jones MP for Harrogate & Knaresborough who replied very promptly on 1 March and we are happy to share his response together with a link to his statement

I wrote to the Prime Minister along with 40-or-so colleagues yesterday saying that I wanted us to give a generous and speedy welcome to Ukrainian refugees as well as supporting the countries directly bordering Ukraine to help refugees with their immediate needs as they flee the country.

I had a meeting with the Prime Minister later on yesterday and I took the opportunity to re-iterate the points in the letter. I think, and I am pleased if it is, that policy is developing in this way. The most pressing need is clearly regional now, but that is changing rapidly and so our policy must change with the situation on the ground. It should be changing in anticipation of what is likely to happen and not be ‘behind the curve’.

I have received a great many emails regarding this and wanted to reply to you personally and very promptly as I know how much you give to the volunteering community who do so much to support refugees when they get here. We are in precisely the same place and I am sure we are both horrified by the human misery this awful and inexplicable war has caused.’

North Yorkshire County Council information

North Yorkshire has pledged to do everything possible to support the people of Ukraine in their fight against the Russian invasion and citizens forced to flee advancing forces.

The council have a webpage which is being updated with information for sponsors and for Ukrainians arriving in the UK. This includes the British Red Cross information leaflet for Ukrainians arriving in the UK. You can also read the information leaflet for Ukrainians arriving in the UK in Ukrainian and Russian.

Harrogate Borough supports the people of Ukraine 

Harrogate Borough Mayor Councillor Trevor Chapman and leader of the council Councillor Richard Cooper raised the Ukrainian flag at the civic centre in Harrogate on 2 March to show the district’s support for the people of Ukraine and their condemnation of the Russian invasion.

Rotary Charitable Appeal for Ukraine

A huge thank you to everyone who supported the Harrogate Brigantes Rotary Club pop up charity cafe at St Peter's Church  in Harrogate town centre on Saturday 5 March. In five hours, thanks to the generosity of the people of Harrogate, nearly £1600 was raised for Rotary’s Ukraine Appeal, approximately £1000 from the sale of food and drink and £600 in donations. Brigantes is making this up to £2000 from members donations and Club funds and this amount will be sent to help the people of Ukraine through the Rotary International Fund

There was a collection by Knaresborough Rotary Club on Saturday 12 March on Knaresborough Market Place and you can now give online. This is part of the Rotary District wide appeal.  

Dates for your diary 
Refugee Week (20-26 June)

We’re reminded of Simple Acts and everyday actions we can all do to stand with refugees and make new connections in our communities. 


Looking after ourselves during scary world events

Scary world news can affect our mental health. After learning about global events that cause uncertainty, you may feel fear, anxiety or a loss of control over your own life and plans. You may worry for the safety of strangers, loved ones or yourself. And if you have lived through similar events in the past, it may bring up traumatic memories.

Mental Health Foundation have created some advice to help you cope and support your loved ones during these uncertain times.

Talking to children about what's happening in Ukraine can be really hard. The Schools of Sanctuary team have put together a resource to support you in helping your child navigate the news they’ve been seeing and how they feel about it.

National Youth Agency (NYA) resources help navigate conversations with young people about the crisis in Ukraine and conflict.

If you’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed our local Just B Hear to Help community support line and The Samaritans are here to listen.

This Easy Read news story is about the Russian army invading Ukraine and how other countries have responded.


Thank you to everyone across Harrogate District donating, supporting and standing up for Ukraine.

At HADCA we stand in solidarity with the Ukrainian people and all those against the war.


We'll be updating this page as well as including information in our weekly HADCA e-bulletins which you can subscribe to receive for free


Updated  16 May 2022