About

The Canadian Refugee Sponsorship Agreement Holders Association is a national membership association for Sponsorship Agreement Holders in Canada. Its purpose is to increase cohesion within this community and develop a common national perspective and voice for the Private Sponsorship of Refugee Program.

The Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program (PSRP) is an integral part of Canada’s Refugee and Humanitarian Resettlement Program. Refugees who have fled their home countries because of a well-founded fear of persecution or because they are seriously and personally affected by civil war or armed conflict, or have suffered massive violations of human rights may be eligible for resettlement to Canada under the PSRP. When considering an applicant for resettlement in Canada, a Canadian visa officer must be satisfied that there is no reasonable prospect, within a reasonable period of time, for the refugee applicant to voluntarily return to his or her home country, to “locally integrate” in the country of refuge or to be resettled in a country other than Canada.

Private sponsors across Canada help resettle refugees who have been accepted for resettlement in Canada under the PSRP. They provide financial and emotional support for sponsored refugees for the duration of the sponsorship. This includes help for housing, clothing and food. Most sponsorships last for one year, but some refugees may be eligible for assistance from sponsors for up to three years.

A Sponsorship Agreement Holder (SAH) is an incorporated organization that has signed an agreement with the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Canada to resettle refugees through the PSRP. SAHs can sponsor refugees themselves or work with others in the community to sponsor refugees.

The SAH Association represents the majority of SAHs operating in Canada and reflects a diversity of faith and ethnic-based and other organizations committed to the PSRP. It seeks to build bridges of understanding among member SAHs and with the department of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) as well as with other governments and organizations and the Canadian public, with the intention of collaborating in the successful operation of the PSRP.