day centres and hostels
Advice - What support is available to people with no recourse to public funds?
No recourse to public funds (NRPF) refers to people who are not entitled to access certain public services in this country. People with NRPF are those who are subject to immigration control and have no entitlement to welfare benefits, to Home Office asylum support for asylum seekers, or to public housing.
- Refused asylum seekers whose appeal rights are exhausted
- People who have overstayed their visas
- People on sponsorship visas, such as spousal visas
- Overseas visitors
- People on student visas
- Other irregular migrants.
Some unemployed migrants from Central and Eastern Europe may also have NRPF.
Individuals with NRPF who become homeless have very few avenues for support that are accessible to them, and some may face destitution.
- The Housing Rights website gives information for recent arrivals in England for advisers about entitlements to housing, based on people's immigration status.
- Homeless Link's website has a an Effective Action document giving guidance for organisations seeking to support individuals with no recourse to public funds.
The regulations governing access to public services and funds is complex so it is important to get advice on individual circumstances as soon as possible. Day centres, CABx and local services for refugees and asylum seekers listed on Homeless UK can provide advice on the limited accommodation and support options available for people with NRPF. Very few hostels or supported accommodation services can accept people with NRPF.
Homeless UK has information about support for Central and Eastern Europeans.
Returning to country of origin
- The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) runs a voluntary return scheme (Voluntary Assisted Return and Reintegration Programme) to assist non-EEA nationals who have been in the asylum system at any stage (applying, appealing or refused) and who wish to return to their country of origin. IOM also runs a voluntary return assistance scheme for families and children (Assisted Voluntary Return for Families and Children).
- Children and Families Across Borders can also assist vulnerable people to return home.
- Routes Home website gives practical guidance for outreach staff and others involved in reconnecting Central and Eastern Europeans sleeping rough back to their home country.