Emerging Private Sponsorship Programmes in Europe: a New Partnership between Government and Local Communities - Webinar

The first in the ERN+ Webinar series on complementary pathways of refugee admission ‘Emerging Private Sponsorship Programmes in Europe: a new partnership between government and local communities’ took place on 23 February 2017. With the overall goal of exploring ways to further build capacity of potential new stakeholders who aim to set up private sponsorship programmes in other European countries, this webinar assessed the state of play of emerging private sponsorship models in Europe.

Through the discussion of three comparative case studies of countries currently running private sponsorship models – namely Canada, Italy and the UK – the six expert panellists explored the main characteristics of, and issues addressed by, each respective programme, from the perspectives of both governments and sponsors. The main considerations of the existing programmes addressed by the panelists included (1) the process of identification and referral, as well as legal status granted to refugees arriving under private sponsorship, (2) the relationship between private sponsorship programmes and existing resettlement commitments, (3) eligibility criteria for becoming a sponsor, and the responsibilities held by sponsors, (4) the nature of partnership between the government and sponsors/civil society and (5) prospects for the long-term social and economic integration of beneficiaries and the actual or projected impact of sponsorship schemes on integration.