Canada’s Private Sponsorship of Refugees (PSR) Program allows Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor refugees from outside of Canada. Sponsors are responsible for the refugee’s reception, lodging, primary care and settlement support until the sponsored refugee becomes self-sufficient. Sponsorship is a three-way group undertaking involving the sponsors, the Canadian government and the sponsored refugees in ensuring the sponsored integrate efficiently into the Canadian social fabric.
Note: The PSR program is strictly for sponsoring refugees and persons under the categories of Convention Refugees Abroad and Country of Asylum as defined by the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, SC 2001, c 27. To be eligible for sponsorship, a refugee applicant must be outside Canada.
Submitting Private Sponsorships As Groups of Five (G5)
The Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations, SOR/2002-227 defines G5 members as five or more Canadian citizens or permanent residents, who are at least 18 years of age, and who have collectively arranged for the sponsorship of a refugee living abroad. G5’s may only sponsor applicants who have recognized refugee status by either the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees or a foreign state. A UNCHR issued Mandate Letter of Protection, or a foreign state refugee recognition document is required upon submission of a sponsorship application.
Overview Of Steps In Sponsoring A Refugee As A G5
Step 1: Eligibility
The group must be composed of five or more individuals and have collectively arranged to sponsor a refugee living abroad.
Each sponsor must be 18 or older; be a Canadian citizen, Registered Indian or a permanent resident of Canada; meet the residency requirements; and not be ineligible to be a party to a sponsorship pursuant to subsection R156(1) of IRPR.
Step 2: Forms, Documents and Representation Checklist
- Sponsorship Undertaking and Settlement Plan – Groups of Five (IMM 5670)
- Sponsor Assessment (IMM 5492)
- Financial Profile (IMM 5373B)
- Generic Application Form for Canada (IMM 0008)
- Schedule A – Background/Declaration (IMM 5669)
- Schedule 2: Refugee Outside Canada (IMM 0008/Schedule 2)
- Proof of Refugee Status Recognition
- Proof of Canadian Citizenship, Indian Status or Permanent Residence
- Criminal Record Check
- Proof of Funds held in Trust
- Proof of Income
- Use of a Representative (IMM 5476)
- Appointment of Representative(s) in Expected Community of Settlement (IMM 5956)
Step 3: Gather and Translating the Documents
Documents submitted must be in English or French. Applicants must submit an affidavit from the person who completed the translation and certified copies of original documents.
Step 4: Fill in the Forms
Type all forms and documents. If you submit handwritten forms, the application will be returned to you without being processed.
Step 5: Email or Mail the Application
Send your application either by email or mail – not both. If sending via mail, send only one application per envelope.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
Resettlement Operations Centre in Ottawa (ROC-O)
Group of Five Unit
365 Laurier Avenue West
Ottawa, ON K1A 1L1
What Are Potential Challenges?
G5’s undertake to provide financial, emotional, and settlement support for the sponsored refugee(s) for a period of 12 – 36 months. And at least three of the G5 members are expected to make a financial commitment. To help avoid refusals, probations and suspensions by the Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada, keep good communication between all parties, read the fine prints, and review all supporting documents before undertaking to be a sponsor.
If you have any questions regarding this blog or need legal assistance in a refugee matter, MEHDI AU LLP is a full-service firm that serves clients across the GTA and Ontario.
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