FAQs about the Council's response to the situation in Afghanistan

What is the Council doing to help support those fleeing the situation in Afghanistan?

Kingston Council has pledged to support the people of Afghanistan, and we will be updating these webpages with more details when we can confirm more details about the support we will be providing.

There are a range of resettlement schemes currently operating in the United Kingdom, funded by the national government, which support different groups of people. There are two schemes, set up in response to the situation in Afghanistan, which we are currently in considering out our capacity to sign up to:

  1. The Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy, (ARAP) which supports Afghan nationals who have supported British efforts in the country. This scheme is currently in operation.
  2. The Afghan Citizens’ Resettlement Scheme, which will allow Afghans most in need, including women, girls and children, to resettle in the UK. This scheme is currently being developed by the Home Office, and will be launched soon.

Why does the Council support refugees?

Kingston Council prides itself on providing sanctuary to refugees and asylum seekers. We believe there is strength in diversity, and we strongly believe that we should open our doors to support those who need it. 

Many of the people fleeing the Taliban are those that supported the British military in Afghanistan, and we therefore have a responsibility to protect them. Families under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy are coming through a different resettlement route and are not classed as refugees.

How can I help?

When we are in a position to begin accommodating Afghan families into the borough we will need private landlords who can offer self-contained flats or houses. If this is you, and you wish to help, please email [email protected].

If you do not have a property you are able to offer, there are still plenty of ways you can help:

  • Emergency relief charities, such as The International Rescue Committee and the British Red Cross, are still working on the ground in Afghanistan 
  • Women for Women International helps female survivors of war rebuild their lives
  • Charities such as Care4Calais are preparing to support refugees arriving in the country by collection clothes donations
  • Refugee Action Kingston support refugees in our borough
  • Afghanaid provide kitchen kits that allow people who have left their homes to cook and safely store food
  • Volunteering Kingston - Sign up to hear about local volunteering opportunities to support and welcome families from Afghanistan
  • 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.

How will Afghan families/refugees be housed?

Refugees arriving through the Government’s resettlement scheme will be housed in private accommodation sourced independently by the project team, and so their arrival will not impact on the Council’s housing register in any way.

How is the Council’s support for Afghan families/refugees paid for?

Like the Vulnerable Person’s Resettlement Scheme, any refugees resettled in Kingston borough will receive funding from the Home Office.

What about services, like school places?

Refugee families arriving in Kingston will be assigned a caseworker, who will help ensure that they are linked into necessary services. The Home Office has also announced additional funding to provide additional school places; support from the NHS; and to help with housing costs. This comes under the Government’s ‘Operation Warm Welcome’.

How will the Afghan families/refugees integrate into the community?

Refugees will receive support to integrate into their local communities. This will be provided by local charities. They will also receive English language classes and be told about, and how to access and navigate, services.

Last Modified: 17/09/2021 15:28:31