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Refugee Sponsorship Program

Under the Canada Refugee Sponsorship Program, refugees and asylum seekers get a chance to migrate to Canada without worrying much about getting the necessary financial aid and support throughout the immigration process. This sponsorship program is a broad category under which various subcategories are devised depending on the nature of financial help provided by the government or private sponsors. Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has carefully divided the major category into three subcategories being:

  • Financial aid provided by Government: Government-Assisted Refugees (GAR) Program

  • Financial aid provided by both Government & Private Sponsor: Blended Visa Office- Referred (BVOR) Program: Joint Assistance Program (JAP)

  • Financial aid provided by Private Sponsor: Private Sponsorship Refugees (PSR) Program

Who can sponsor a refugee?

Not everyone is eligible to sponsor under the Canada Refugee Sponsorship Program. Only specific people who are registered with the IRCC can help refugees resettle. These recognized and registered institutions are:

  • Sponsorship Agreement Holders (SAH) & their Constituents

  • Group of Five ( G5)

  • Community Sponsors (CS)

GAR Program

Under this program, the refugees get a chance to settle in Canada with complete initial financial assistance from the Canadian government or IRCC. Moving to Canada under this program is only possible if you are referred to IRCC by United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) or any other refugee agency working in agreement with the Canadian Government. Applicants do not have to option to apply directly under this program and can only avail services if their profile is fully assessed and accepted by UNHCR or other Refugee settlement agencies.

BVOR Program

This program works in collaboration with UNHCR and helps in connecting finalized refugees by UNHCR to their sponsors. If the refugee successfully finds a sponsor for them then they need not worry about initial settlement costs like furniture and housing, basic necessities like food and clothing, and other daily requirements. The program financially supports them for up to 6 months of their arrival and emotionally + socially supports them for up to 1 year of their arrival. Canada refugee immigration is not that difficult under this program.

JAP Program

This program takes care of the refugees with special needs like trauma from violence/abuse, medical disabilities, systemic discrimination, and many family members. All kinds of support include furniture and housing, necessities like food and clothing and other daily requirements, and taking care of emotional and social needs. Other points to keep in mind are:

  • For the Joint Assistance Sponsorship Program only Sponsorship Agreement Holders and its Constituents are eligible to sponsor.

  • The organization can sponsor the refugees for up to 24 months.

  • Canadian government provides financial assistance in collaboration with private sponsors.

PSR Program

The Private Sponsorship Refugees Program allows a private sponsor to financially aid a refugee for up to 1 year from the time of their arrival. All kinds of support to be provided include furniture and housing, necessities like food and clothing and other daily requirements, and taking care of emotional and social needs. Other points to keep in mind for this program are:

  • You can sponsor a specific refugee/family

  • The refugee/refugees must be eligible for the PSR program

  • The sponsor or refugee shall receive no financial aid from the government

  • The application process depends upon the type of sponsorship group you are

Application Process

To apply for any one of the programs other than the Government Assisted Refugees Program one needs to make sure of the two steps involves in the application process. You must choose a refugee who needs to be assessed and approved by the Canadian government or UNHCR. More so, the private sponsor must apply within 14, or else other interested sponsors can also try to sponsor a refugee after the end of the 14-day application period if the initial private sponsor fails to do so. 


If you have any doubts regarding the Canada Refugee Sponsorship Program or Canada Immigration you can book a free visa consultancy session today to get your profile assessed by one of our experts.