Spain is working on a register of host families for Ukrainian refugees

by Lorraine Williamson
host Ukrainian refugees in Spain

MADRID – Spain is working on a program to receive refugees from Ukraine. On Tuesday, Minister Escrivá presented a plan ‘Ucrania Urgente’ in which Spaniards, among others, can register to be host families for Ukrainian refugees.

The first goal of setting up such a register is to get an overview of people who are willing to open their homes and host Ukrainian refugees. Social workers will then work with the social services of the municipality. They will screen these host families to ensure the refugees end up in a safe place. 

Quick safe accommodation in Spain 

Minister Escrivá of Inclusion, Social Security, and Migration announced this initiative during a press conference last Tuesday. The ‘Ucrania Urgente’ program will ensure that the reception of Ukrainian refugees runs smoothly. At the beginning of March, the Spanish government already agreed that reception procedures should be temporarily relaxed so that refugees are quickly allocated safe accommodation. 

At the time of writing, the network of host families is already taking shape. On March 15, there were already 21,000 places for refugees from Ukraine. The minister said that he would give priority to minors who came to Spain unaccompanied by an adult. 

Various reception locations for Ukrainian refugees in Spain already 

According to Ministry data, mainly in Madrid, Catalonia, and southern Levante, there were some 112,000 Ukrainian refugees in Spain before Russia invaded Ukraine. The government previously announced that it had already opened various reception centres in Spain. All administrative matters are arranged here and the people are then assigned a place to stay as soon as possible. 

European Commission works with Spain on long-term integration 

However, the Ucrania Urgente program does not stop after someone has found temporary accommodation. Local authorities not only assist in allocating work permits but also ensure that people receive legal, psychological, and medical assistance. The implementation of the plan does require extra effort from the available resources, according to the minister. To cope with this, the European Commission is currently finalising a regulation to make more money available for the long-term integration of refugees. 

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