Foundations of Community Sponsorship is a suite of training materials prepared by the Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative with the aim of supporting organizations in countries developing community sponsorship programs.
Organizations supporting sponsorship groups and refugee newcomers can use Foundations of Community Sponsorship to train and prepare sponsorship group members. This set of modularized and reflective training resources includes a training manual for in-person delivery as well as a complementary online learning resource.
These materials are universal in nature and can be tailored and contextualized by local organizations for different community-based refugee sponsorship programs.
Some countries may already have official and/or mandatory training resources available. It is strongly recommended that you explore your national training materials beforehand.
A repository of common considerations and challenges of refugee sponsorship that sponsorship group members and trainers can consult in their own time before, during or after the training.
The In-Person Workshops Manual is designed to provide detailed guidance to trainers preparing to deliver refugee sponsorship training to new sponsorship group members or sponsorship trainers. It maps out in-person training considerations, how to use the manual, key facilitation guidelines, exercises and the materials needed for the workshops.
Your organization can deliver this training in 1 to 2-hour sessions across a week/several weeks or one 8-hour day (less ideal).
The delivery is adaptable and can accommodate new sponsorship group members or sponsorship trainers.
The manual for delivering in-person training focuses on experiential and group learning, giving new sponsors tools to problem solve and develop attitudes and skills to successfully welcome refugee newcomers. For example, sponsorship group members will be able to practice identifying assumptions and cultural biases in community sponsorship scenarios or practice communicating effectively as a sponsorship group.
You will also find a section of the manual dedicated to developing sponsorship trainers’ facilitation skills and active listening as part of a training of trainers delivery approach.
Your organization can adapt, change or build on the exercises provided. Throughout the manual, sections requiring country-specific information are identified. It is recommended that trainers complete these sections before delivering the in-person training.
REGISTER below to download the training manual and accompanying slide show.
The online learning resource is designed to accommodate the additional learning needs of trainers and sponsorship groups. It offers practical advice related to community sponsorship and provides numerous examples, scenarios and exercises.
The online learning resource is structured into four stages. These stages can be accessed flexibly and according to the areas of interest, without the requirement to complete them in a particular order.
The online learning resource is complementary to the in-person training. It is a repository of common considerations and challenges of refugee sponsorship that sponsorship group members and trainers can consult in their own time before, during or after the training. It offers ideas, examples and techniques on a vast array of settlement topics to guide sponsorship group members and support positive integration outcomes for sponsored refugee newcomers.
The online learning tool can inspire you and serve as a basis for your organization’s online as well as printed resources.
Register and start exploring the site.
This training uses the Knowledge, Attitudes, Skills (KAS) format for learning outcomes. Our goal is to ensure that the training not only provides sponsorship group members with the information they need to succeed, but also addresses the attitudes and values that may influence how they approach sponsorship. It also supports the development of skills sponsorship group members need to fulfil their roles.
Foundations of Community Sponsorship is built around four guiding principles that provide a framing for sponsorship group members to reflect and problem-solve through any refugee sponsorship activities.
Going into any new experience or situation with specific expectations can lead to disappointment or confusion for those involved. This also applies to refugee sponsorship. It can be useful to consider a variety of possible outcomes, identify assumptions, and keep an open mind throughout the refugee sponsorship period. Supporting someone who is adjusting to a new environment can take time and rarely unfolds as expected!
Reflecting on how our gestures, actions, and understanding of the world may be specific to cultures and ourselves as individuals is essential to refugee sponsorship. You, the sponsorship group members, and the refugee newcomers might have similar and differing cultural norms informing your perspectives and behaviour. Considering culture in refugee sponsorship is about everyone involved growing and learning – refugee newcomers and the sponsorship group and the community.
Respecting the privacy and confidentiality of refugee newcomers is critical. They may trust the sponsorship group and share personal details, but it is still for them to decide how much of their lives they wish to share and with whom. Carefully navigating privacy and confidentiality whenever recounting a story or sharing information is key.
The goal of refugee sponsorship is the refugee newcomers becoming self-sufficient at the end of the sponsorship period. This involves their ability to make their own plans and decisions to attain their own goals. Your sponsorship group will explore ‘doing with’ rather than ‘doing for’ refugee newcomers. A power dynamic exists between all people, including the sponsorship group members and refugee newcomers, so always considering that power will be critical to a successful refugee sponsorship experience.