As the first Syrian refugees arrive in Brighton and Hove, the city council is renewing its appeal for potential landlords to come forward to house more.
Two families arrived this week, and another is expected next week, but the city council would like to accept more.
Negotiations with the Institute of Our Lady of Mercy to use the former St Joseph’s Care Home in Bristol Road, Kemp Town, are progressing, but in the meantime more privately rented homes are being sought.
Councillor Emma Daniel, chair of the neighbourhoods, communities and equality committee, said: “Once again we are appealing to people who may have a property in the city that they don’t normally let out but who would be willing to help us meet this tragic crisis by providing self-contained long term accommodation for refugees.
“We are not asking for rooms in people’s homes – we are looking for flats or houses or holiday lets. If you have a property you are willing to offer please get in touch.
“We are working closely with charities and community groups on this programme – so there will be lots of practical support for the refugees and for landlords who come on board.”
The refugees, identified by the UN in countries bordering Syria, will receive support and funding from the government for five years. This will include schooling and health care.
Accommodation has been provided by local landlords who have stepped forward to offer housing specifically for these refugees.
The council has also recently welcomed several unaccompanied young people as part of a joint initiative with Kent County Council. This is in addition to welcoming refugees who have come to the city in the past from Syria and other areas of conflict in the world.
Cllr Daniel added: “We have got everything in place for the three households and we feel really positive that they will be fully supported. The government has provided funding for this and has also confirmed funding for future years.
“I’d like to reassure people that the properties that are being used are properties that people have put forward specifically for refugees and wouldn’t normally be available so no one is being pushed down a queue for social care, education and housing.
“We are able to fully play our part in this global humanitarian effort without anyone in the city feeling like they are missing out.”
Brighton and Hove City Council has a strong tradition of working with charities and community groups including local charity Brighton Voice in Exile, who are co-ordinating help from the community to welcome and support the refugees.
Landlords who have self-contained properties where they would be willing to house Syrian refugees long term please get in touch via email firstname.lastname@example.org.