People offering spare rooms to Ukrainian refugees say information is unclear

Credit: AP

People across Britain have been offering their spare bedrooms to refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine, despite concerns at the lack of information on how to help.

Shaun Herlihy, 52, from Rhymney, in south Wales, said he would be willing to house a family for “as long as it takes” but added he does not “know where to start.”

“I’ve got a spare room and I have the capability so I’d be more than happy to help out in any way I can,” he said.

“I just don’t like seeing anyone suffering, especially innocent children.

“I have a big spare bedroom and they would have access to a shower, washing machine, fridge, TV and food in the cupboard, everything they would need really.

“I am prepared to do all the checks, psychological or police checks, whatever it takes.”

Shaun Herlihy said he would be willing to house a family for ‘as long as it takes’ Credit: Shaun Herlihy/PA

The government has given details of a new scheme that could give people offering accommodation to Ukrainian refugees a “thank you” payment of £350 per month.

The Homes for Ukraine programme, to be rolled out this week, will allow individuals, charities, community groups and businesses to bring people escaping the war to safety – even if they have no ties to the UK.

Mr Herlihy said he is finding it hard to find clear information on how to offer his home.

He said the idea of an extra £350 per month would be “welcome” but said he is willing to cover the costs of housing a family without it.

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“I think people would be willing to offer their homes regardless, but the extra money would be helpful,” he said.

“I have posted on Twitter saying I am happy to help, hopefully someone will see that, whether it is a family in Ukraine or someone who needs help.

“They are welcome to come and stay with me whether the government likes it or not, it’s my flat and I pay for it and I want to help.”

Meanwhile, Adam, 38, who did not give his last name, from Folkestone, Kent, criticised the government response for being too slow.

He said: “It seems to me a bodged operation, the government knew Russia was going to invade weeks before it did.

“I can’t do nothing, so I’m opening up my house and will welcome them in.

“£350 a month is a nice gesture, but that works out at just over £10 a day and there is not enough information out there on how it will work.

“Anyway, I am looking forward to meeting my new housemate/s and perhaps learning some Ukrainian.”