An article in the University of Toronto magazine discusses the strengths of Canada's private refugee scholarship program and provides suggestions for how it can be improved.
According to UofT Professor Audrey Macklin, research shows that privately sponsored refugees perform better in their new home compared to those who come via the government program. This is usually due to privately sponsored refugees arriving to a network of advocates who provide material support and also advice, contacts and instant social relationships. However, there is very little known about the sponsors themselves.
When Macklin and her research team evaluated the results of a survey completed by 530 sponsors, they determined that several recognized the power imbalances that are engraved into the structure of the private sponsorship program.
"In discussions of how the private sponsorship program could be improved, suggestions proposed included more formal training for individuals and groups sponsoring refugees and required background checks for participants, as well as changes to the tax laws that would allow people to treat contributions to a private sponsorship effort as charitable donations."
Applied research Advocacy