Help for displaced people from Ukraine

Information and support for displaced people from Ukraine in the UK, including family migration visa and the Homes for Ukraine scheme. 

Last updated 17 May 2024

The British Red Cross is one of the charities supporting people affected by the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine who are now in the UK.

To find out how we can help, click on the link below to find your nearest Red Cross refugee service.

You can also use the information on this page to find out about services and support that might be available.


For any more information about the British Red Cross, or emotional support please call the free British Red Cross support line:

0808 196 3651 and select option 1 (Open Monday to Friday 10am to 5pm, Wednesday 10am to 8pm).

If you need a support line interpreter, call and say 'can I speak to an interpreter?'

  • Якщо вам потрібен перекладач лінії підтримки, зателефонуйте і скажіть: 'can I speak to an interpreter?' (Ukrainian)
  • Если вам нужен переводчик линии поддержки, позвоните и скажите: 'can I speak to an interpreter?' (Russian)



Are you a British national in Ukraine?

The Embassy is operating a limited diplomatic function from Kyiv, but does not provide in-person consular assistance. If you’re a British national in Ukraine and need consular assistance, phone +380 44 490 3660 (available 24/7).

How to contact the Ukrainian Embassy in the UK

The Ukrainian Embassy can often provide help to Ukrainian nationals within the UK. You can contact the Ukrainian Embassy in London by calling 020 7727 6312 or emailing

The address for the UK Ukrainian Embassy in London is 60 Holland Park, Kensington, W11 3SJ, London.


How to find missing family in Ukraine

If you have lost contact with your family in Ukraine during the conflict and you know they have crossed the Ukrainian border into a neighbouring country (e.g. Poland, Slovakia, Moldova, Romania or Russia), please keep trying to contact them. It may be a temporary loss of contact as they transition to networks in other countries.

If you are unable to contact your family and you think they are still within the territory of Ukraine, we may be able to help you.

Please email and provide us with your full name and telephone number. A team member from the International Family Tracing service will contact you as soon as possible.


Ukraine family scheme 

The Ukraine family scheme closed on 19 February 2024. 


Homes for Ukraine scheme 

The Homes for Ukraine scheme allows Ukrainian nationals and their family members  who were residents in Ukraine before 1 January of 2022 to apply to come to the UK and stay with a UK -based sponsor. Sponsors can live anywhere in the UK (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) and must be British or Irish Citizens or be ‘settled in the UK’ (which means having the right to live in the UK permanently) on the date of the guest’s visa application if that application is submitted after 3pm on 19 February 2024. 

People arriving under this scheme will be able to live and work in the UK for up to 3 years or 18 months for applications submitted after 3pm on the 19 February 2024.

The application is free of charge and can be completed by the prospective sponsor or the person wishing to be sponsored. A separate application form must be completed for each person. Security checks for both Ukrainians and the UK sponsor will be undertaken as part of the visa application process.

You will need to book an appointment to have your photograph and fingerprints taken at a visa application centre (VAC) as part of your application. If you attended your biometrics appointment in Kyiv and your visa application is successful, you’ll need to travel to the VAC in Warsaw with a valid international passport to collect your visa vignette. If you had an appointment in another country, you’ll need to collect your visa vignette at the same VAC you submitted your biometrics.     

Children under the age of 5 will not have their fingerprints taken but will still need to book and attend a VAC appointment and have a digital photograph taken. 

The scheme is also open to unaccompanied children under 18 - the sponsor must have parental consent and permission from the local council before applying for a visa. Sponsors can apply to provide a safe home for a Ukrainian child here.

You can contact UK Visas and Immigration free Ukraine helpline if you need help: +44 808 164 8810 - select option 1. If you cannot contact UK 0808 numbers, please use: +44 (0)175 390 7510.

Find out more information about the scheme: 


Ukraine Extension scheme

The Ukraine Extension Scheme closed on 16 May 2024 and applications submitted after 23:59 on 16 May 2024 will not be considered. However, the Ukraine Extension Scheme will remain open after 16 May 2024 for children who are born in the UK to apply for permission to stay.

You can apply for your child to have permission under the Ukraine Extension Scheme if both of the following is true: 

  • you have permission to be in the UK under one of the Ukraine Schemes (including the Ukraine Family Scheme)
  • your child was born in the UK

Your child must be in the UK when the application is made.

This route does not require a UK-based sponsor and does not currently lead to settlement. This means that time spent in the UK with this visa may not support an application for indefinite leave to remain in the UK in future.

Find out more about the Ukraine Extension Scheme.

  • Apply to stay in the UK under the Ukraine Extension Scheme - GOV.UK (
  • Подача заявлений на проживание в Великобритании по Схеме продления пребывания для украинцев - GOV.UK (
  • Подання заяв за Схемою подовження перебування у Великій Британії для українців - GOV.UK (


Supporting non-British family members in Ukraine

Applying for a family migration visa

Family members of British nationals can apply for a family migration visa to come to the UK.

The Home Office has announced that some of the normal eligibility criteria has been removed for family members including language requirements and salary thresholds.


Extend your permission to be in the UK 

Ukraine Permission Extension scheme

Individuals who were granted visas under the Ukraine schemes (Homes for Ukraine, Ukraine Family visa scheme, and Ukraine Extension scheme) will be able to apply for a further 18 months of permission to stay in the UK under the new scheme. The new scheme will be free and applicants will be able to apply 3 months before the current visa expires. 


Arriving under Ukraine Schemes on permission letter

Where an application is made outside the UK for entry clearance under the Ukraine Family Scheme or Homes for Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme, then in certain circumstances the applicant can travel to the UK on a “permission to travel” letter.

This is issued prior to entry to the UK, before providing biometrics and before the entry clearance application is decided.

The applicant will be granted six months leave to enter at the border. Before the end of the six months, the applicant must complete Ukraine Scheme Status to extend permission to stay in the UK.

This process is only open to a Ukrainian national with a valid international passport.  


How to claim asylum in the UK as a Ukrainian 

Ukrainians refugees already in the UK may be able to claim asylum, it is important to seek immigration advice before making an asylum claim.  Find out more about the asylum process.

The British Red Cross can provide support to refugees and asylum seekers. Find out more on Get help as a refugee or asylum seeker.


Legal advice 

People are strongly recommended to seek legal advice before applying for visas or seeking asylum. 

  • Settled is a charity that provides immigration advice to Ukrainians who want to travel to UK, and also Ukrainians who are already in the UK and need support. You can contact them via email 
  • Ukraine Advice Project UK is an initiative by qualified lawyers, led by law firm DLA Piper who are providing free legal information on UK visas and refugee rules. You can find out more about the initiative on the Ukraine Advice Project UK website.
  • You can find a solicitor in the UK on the Law Society website. Search “Legal Issue & Changing Countries”, and enter your postcode, town or city.


Support for Ukrainian family members arriving in Wales

The British Red Cross offers specialist post-arrival integration support to Ukrainian family members arriving in Wales through the Ukraine Family Scheme. Please contact us via email: or phone 01633 720 00, option 3. 

The project is supported by the Welsh government, and we are working closely with local authorities, statutory and voluntary services to provide holistic support for Ukrainian families in Wales.


Support for displaced people from Ukraine travelling to the UK 

The Ukrainian Displaced Persons Travel Scheme offers free rail journeys across all train operators in England, Scotland and Wales. All Ukrainians who arrive in the UK will have 48 hours from arrival to access free tickets and complete their journey. You will need to show a Ukrainian passport and a boarding pass or ticket to access this offer. You will also be able to travel for free across London using TfL's London Underground, Docklands Light Railway (DLR), bus and tram services.

The coach company National Express offers free travel to Ukrainians who arrive in the UK. The free travel can be arranged from a UK arrival point to another location currently served on the National Express network. Individuals will have 48 hours to make their onward journey from arrival into the country.

Safety tips for families escaping conflict

International organisation for migration (IOM)

The IOM has set up information and support hotlines for persons in Ukraine and fleeing Ukraine in different countries.


Safety tips for families

Download our posters for safety tips if you and your family are on the move.

Anti-trafficking advice

Accommodation for displaced people from Ukraine in the UK


Bringing a pet to the UK 

Displaced people from Ukraine are welcome to bring pets to the UK. To protect the health of your pet and other pets, your pet may need to stay in quarantine upon arrival in the UK for up to four months, or until they meet our health requirements. Find out more information on bringing a pet to the UK.


Borrowing a wheelchair

If you know somebody in need of a wheelchair or mobility equipment, the Red Cross hires out equipment for short-term use. The service is free to Ukrainian refugees.

Call 0300 456 1914, or visit

  • Потрібне крісло-коляска? Служба допоміжних засобів пересування Британського Червоного

    Хреста надає обладнання в оренду для короткострокового використання. Відвідайте сайт (Ukrainian)

  • Нужно кресло-коляска? Служба вспомогательных средств передвижения Британского общества Красного Креста предоставляет оборудование в аренду для краткосрочного использования. Посетите сайт (Russian)

Completing a Self Assessment tax return in the UK

If you earn money in the UK, you may need to pay tax on it. Self Assessment is the name for the process when you declare and pay any tax owed to the government.  
If you are employed, then your employer will deduct any tax owed (Income Tax and National Insurance) before they pay you. If you are self employed or earn money that doesn't come from your main job, you may need to do a Self Assessment tax return. 


What you need to know about life in the UK

Our short videos, written guides and presentations will provide you with useful information including:

  • basic facts about life in the UK
  • accessing services online and staying safe
  • parenting children in the UK
  • getting help from different services in the UK
  • women's health and the right to protection.

See more videos about life in the UK and access the welcome guide for Ukrainians arriving in the UK.

Read a welcome guide for Ukrainian children under 18 in the UK goverment website (available in English, Ukrainian and Russian).


Video resources in Ukrainian

Як отримати необхідну мені допомогу у Великій Британії?

How can I get the help I need in the UK?

Що потрібно знати про життя моєї дитини у Великій Британії?

What do I need to know about having my child in the UK?

Що потрібно знати про життя у Великій Британії?

What do I need to know about life in the UK?

Video resources in Russian

Как я могу получить необходимую помощь в Великобритании?

How can I get the help I need in the UK?


What do I need to know about having my child in the UK?

Что мне нужно знать о жизни в Великобритании?

What do I need to know about life in the UK?

Emotional support

It is common to feel a lot of different emotions after leaving your homeland and your wellbeing and mental health may well suffer as a result of your experience. You can use our wellbeing resources (available in English and Ukrainian) to manage feelings like anxiety, stress and worry. 

Arrow icon Ресурси покращення добробуту українською мовою (Ukrainian)

Arrow icon Ресурсы улучшение благополучия на русском языке (Russian)

Arrow icon Wellbeing resources in English

Help when you feel at your worst

If you are feeling very distressed, call The Samaritans on 116 123 or email

Loneliness Red Cross support line volunteer

Call our support line

For information about all support available for Ukrainian refugees in the UK, you can call the British Red Cross support line and speak to a volunteer.

Call us on 0808 196 3651 and press 1 for information related to Ukraine. You can also ask for an interpreter if you need one.

The support line is open Monday to Friday 10am - 5pm and Wednesday 10am to 8pm