Frequently Asked Questions

Operation #NotForgotten is a partnership between MOSAIC (a Sponsorship Agreement Holder based in Vancouver), Ads Up Canada and the Refugee Council of Australia, in cooperation with UNHCR Australia. The program brings refugees who were involuntarily transferred to either Manus or Nauru from Australia to Canada through private sponsorship. Learn more.

This program is for refugees who were involuntarily transferred to Manus and Nauru and who have received a rejection from the USA resettlement program. Ads Up Canada, MOSAIC and UNHCR work together to evaluate and prioritise all eligible persons on the registration list who have no other durable solutions for resettlement. Refugees are not selected from the registration list based on how long they have been registered. Instead, there are a number of factors that we take into consideration, including prioritisation/urgency (offshore vs community detention, for ex.), eligibility under the PSR program, and available allocations and funds.

It is important to remember that the Private Sponsorship of Refugees is ultimately a government program, and it is the Government of Canada that makes the final decision.

Every day we are contacted by refugees from all over the world who want to be privately sponsored to Canada. Unfortunately, because of limited funds and capacity we are currently only able to work with refugees who were detained on Manus or Nauru.

There are no easy ways to come to Canada as a refugee, and there is no central place where you will find Canadians waiting to privately sponsor refugees,. But there are three main ways that refugees abroad can try to come to Canada. Learn more.

Ads Up Canada is always looking for volunteers who are passionate about welcoming newcomers to Canada. Our settlement teams consist of a minimum of 4 members who reside in the same community. All formal members of the settlement team must be either Canadian citizens or Canadian Permanent Residents and may reside anywhere in Canada except Quebec (which has a separate sponsorship system). If you are interested in forming or joining a settlement team, or in learning more about the responsibilities of settlement teams and how Ads Up Canada supports them, please fill out this contact form and our Refugee Sponsorship Coordinator will be in touch.

Settlement teams (or in the Canadian government’s language, “sponsors”) are responsible for providing social and emotional support to newcomers upon their arrival to Canada for a period of one year. They provide both pre-arrival and post-arrival support. Learn more.

Since 2013 the Australian Government has refused to accept any refugees arriving by boat, a policy intended to deter asylum seekers from making the dangerous journey from their homelands to the Australian mainland via Indonesia. These people fled their countries because they were in need of protection but have instead been caught in a legal limbo of indefinite detention.  Thousands – including men, women and children – who lawfully sought refugee status in Australia, were caught by the sudden change in policy just weeks after it was announced. The Australian government has been unwilling to resettle them in Australia and unable to send them back to dangerous situations in their home countries, so has detained them in offshore Pacific island camps in Papua New Guinea and Nauru.

The suffering, abuse and neglect experienced by those in indefinite detention is significant and well-documented. Learn more.

Refugees will be resettled across Canada with the exception of Quebec, which has its own sponsorship program. Currently, we work with settlement teams across multiple provinces, including Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The communities in which our settlement teams live are both big and small, rural and urban. We work with both refugees and settlement teams to determine the best location for refugees to live, taking into consideration medical needs, interests and availability.

Ads Up Canada raises funds in order to support sponsorships for refugees from Manus and Nauru and to pay for our operating costs, which allow us to recruit, train and support settlement teams across Canada, who will in turn welcome and support refugees during their first year here.

Ads Up Canada does not keep any of the funds raised for sponsorships. 100% of sponsorship funds raised are held in trust by our partner, MOSAIC, and disbursed to refugees once they arrive in Canada. Those funds are used to support newcomers (housing, clothing, furniture, etc.) and there is no administrative fee.

As a grassroots organization, our operating costs are minimal but necessary. We have one dedicated staff member, and the rest of our work (including that done by our two co-directors) is done by volunteers.

Ads Up Canada’s strength as a grassroots organisation is our ability to mobilize both Australian expats, who may not have had the opportunity to serve as private sponsors, as well as Canadians who have experience of private sponsorship. Through our deep ties to Australians and Australian refugee advocacy organizations, we have also been able to raise significant funds. Most importantly, however, we are different because we work in partnership to build capacity and work at scale to bring refugees from Manus and Nauru to Canada. By working alongside an established Sponsorship Agreement Holder, MOSAIC, along with the cooperation of the Refugee Council of Australia (RCoA) and UNHCR Australia, we are able to do more than we could alone.

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