Apply to sponsor a refugee – Community Sponsors

Before you apply, read the application package to make sure that you qualify to be a Community Sponsor. Also read the Guide to the Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program for information you will need when you apply.

Community Sponsors may only sponsor applicants who are recognized as refugees by either the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) or a foreign state.

You must include with the refugee sponsorship application a document proving refugee status recognition that the UNHCR or a foreign state has issued. We will accept a photocopy of the original document.

Quebec has its own process for sponsoring refugees. For sponsors in Quebec, visit refugee sponsorship in Quebec.

There are three steps to applying to become a Community Sponsor:

1. Decide if you want to sponsor a specific refugee or a refugee referred by a visa office

In some cases, a Community Sponsor may want to sponsor a specific refugee or refugee family abroad, such as a:

  • friend
  • member of a family in the community
  • a refugee identified by an overseas contact

This is known as a “sponsor-referred refugee.”

Sponsor-referred refugees must qualify under Canada’s refugee and humanitarian resettlement program. Both you and the refugee must fill out an application. After you apply, visa officers abroad will assess the application to decide whether the person you want to sponsor qualifies.

In other cases, your group may ask for a “visa office-referred refugee.” These refugees are eligible and have already been selected by a visa officer abroad, but need a private sponsor before they can come to Canada.

You can request a refugee profile if you want to sponsor a visa office-referred refugee through Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s Resettlement Operations Centre in Ottawa (ROC-O).

More details are available in the Guide to the Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program that is included in the application kit. For more information on the refugee profile, see requesting a refugee profile.

2. Get the application package

The kit includes the application guide and all of the forms you need to fill out. Download and print the application kit.

  • Before you start, read the guide carefully. It has detailed instructions for completing all the required forms.
  • Gather all of the necessary documents. They are listed in the document checklist.
  • Photocopy the blank forms and use one as a working copy. Keep the working copy for your records.
  • Fill in the forms carefully and completely. You can complete and save many of the forms on your computer. Print the forms after you fill them out. If you are filling out the forms by hand, print clearly in black ink. Sign and date your forms.
  • Complete these forms:
    • Undertaking/Application to Sponsor (IMM 5373);
    • Sponsor Assessment (IMM 5492);
    • Settlement Plan and Financial Assessment (IMM 5515). This form is a planning tool for sponsoring groups to show how they will deliver the financial settlement assistance needed to help the refugees settle in Canada. Where possible, plans should be in place before the refugee arrives;
    • Document Checklist (IMM 5437).


      • Request for a Refugee Profile (IMM 5438). You must complete this form if you want to ask for a refugee profile. See the section above for more information;
      • Use of a Representative (IMM 5476). You must complete this form if you want to use a representative or an agent to help you apply. Using a representative is a personal choice. Find out more about using representatives.
  • The refugees you are applying to sponsor must complete the Application for Convention Refugees Abroad and Humanitarian-Protected Persons Abroad (IMM 6000), unless you are asking for a refugee profile.
  • Enclose proof of funds for the Community Sponsors.
  • Enclose proof of refugee status recognition for the principal refugee applicant. We will accept a photocopy of the original document.

3. Submit your application

Use the document checklist to make sure that you have included everything you need. Sign and date your forms. We will not process your application if it is incomplete. We will return it to the person or group that submitted it.

Mail all of the required documents to:

Resettlement Operations Centre in Ottawa (ROC-O) New
365 Laurier Avenue West
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 1L1

We've changed our address

Starting April 1, 2017, all Privately Sponsored Refugee (PSR) applications should be mailed to the address listed above.

Make sure you provide your complete return mailing address.

Remember, it is up to you to keep your application up-to-date.


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