Community Sponsorship

The global idea of ​​comprehensive support for people with refugee experience.

What does the term “community sponsorship” mean (based on Pathways International materials)

  • Programs in which individuals or groups provide financial, emotional and practical support for the reception and integration of refugees.
  • A holistic and multi-sectoral model on the line: individuals and groups of citizens - local institutions and organisations - government institutions/central authorities.
  • The model does not replace the state's tasks - it is to complement them, while providing an additional mechanism for the protection and integration of refugees.

CS has proven to be an effective tool in humanitarian crises. The model of named sponsorship—in which “sponsors” identify individuals they would like to welcome—has proven to be instrumental in mobilising communities to support population movements from conflict zones (e.g., Ukraine, Syria, Afghanistan).

Community sponsorship is a term used internationally, including in the Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative. It describes programs that enable groups of individuals to commit to supporting the initial reception and integration of refugees arriving in their communities through resettlement and supplementary pathways.

Organisations or groups of citizens commit to providing support (emotional, financial, and practical) for a specified period of time to help refugees adjust to life in their new country. In many countries, this is contextualised locally with a unique term (for example, “private sponsorship” in Canada).


  • Success of programs in Canada - the leader and forerunner of the model - over 350,000 refugees accepted since the 1970s.
  • Most of the other programs were developed quite recently in response to the crisis in Syria, the war in Ukraine and as commitments resulting from the Global Compact for Refugees.
  • Over 700,000 refugees have been covered by community sponsorship programs in various countries of the world.
  • Programs are implemented in the USA, Australia, New Zealand, Great Britain, Spain, Germany, and Argentina, among others.
  • At the EU level, the New Pact on Asylum and Migration called on Member States to introduce community sponsorship programs, with the support of the European Union Agency for Asylum (EUAA) and the possibility of EU funding.


Benefits of the model

  • An additional mechanism for the protection of refugees, according to available data, has a positive impact on the integration of refugees in new communities.
  • In its assumption, CS promotes cooperation and networking between different sectors of social life.
  • Local communities are also strengthened, which unites them in joint integration projects.
  • The model promotes inclusive and inclusive attitudes in communities covered by CS-type programs. Often a satisfying experience for both parties - the host and the hosted person.
  • In the international environment, CS is often seen as a new solution to an existing problem (i.e. low availability of international protection mechanisms for people who need them). In recent years, the model has enjoyed great interest, which is also reflected in international commitments and documents.
  • It is a solution taken up by governments on a wide political spectrum from the left, through the centre, to the right.


More information can be found here:

Comprehensive guide on CS in Canada (PDF, ENG):



Amnesty International material describing the idea of ​​Community sponsorship (ENG):


Description of the program in Canada (ENG):


Campaign to improve the program in Australia (ENG):


A film showing how CS works through the eyes of a refugee.

A video showing how it works from the receiving side.



Logo Pathways InternationalThe activity partner is Pathways International.