Wandsworth Council appeals to landlords in support of the Afghan refugee resettlement scheme

Published: Thursday, September 2, 2021

Wandsworth Council is urging to private landlords and residents with second homes in the borough to come forward if they are able to offer housing for the Afghan refugee resettlement schemes.

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The appeal comes as the council announces it has joined the Government’s Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (ARAP) and the Afghan Citizens’ Resettlement Scheme, reconfirming its commitment to help Afghan families resettling in London.

The takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban has prompted a mass evacuation of Afghan citizens. The UK Government will give homes to 20,000 Afghan people under its two schemes. Wandsworth Council has committed to providing good quality housing for as many families as possible and will ensure those settling in the borough are supported to access public services, such as healthcare and education, and to integrate into their communities.

The council is also providing guidance for residents who want to support the resettlement and response to the crisis in Afghanistan.

Councillor Ravi Govindia, Leader of Wandsworth Council, said: “The scenes in Afghanistan have been very distressing and our hearts go out to all of those who have been forced to leave their homes or are going through huge upheavals in their lives due to the ongoing situation.

“We have a long and proud history in Wandsworth welcoming displaced people into our borough, dating back to the Huguenots in the 17th Century up to very recently Syrian refugees seeking resettlement.

“Our priority is now to help in finding homes from those fleeing Afghanistan and give these people the care and support they need as they try to rebuild their lives in a new country.

“As always in Wandsworth we’ve had lots of requests from people wanting to help. The single most important thing we need right now is suitable accommodation, but this must be balanced with the demand for housing in our area. This is why we need private landlords to come forward.

“Beyond that, the best way for people to help is through financial donations, which can be done through organisations like the British Red Cross and the Refugee Council. This money will be used to support refugees as they settle into their new homes.”

Find information about donations and volunteering, along with further details for private landlords, on our website wandsworth.gov.uk/refugee-resettlement. Alternatively, please email landlordlettings@wandsworth.gov.uk or call 020 8871 7333