Header image © UNHCR – Annie Sakaab

Community Refugee Integration and Settlement Pilot (CRISP)

The CRISP allows groups of everyday Australians to welcome refugees into their local community and help them from ‘day one’ of their Australian journey.

A new refugee sponsorship program for Australia!

After years of research, advocacy and imagining, Australia finally has a new community refugee sponsorship program, which commenced in mid 2022. The federal government has partnered with CRSA in the design and delivery of the ‘CRISP’ program – the Community Refugee Integration and Settlement Pilot. The program will support 1,500 refugees over four years via help from community groups.

An opportunity to act locally as part of a global movement

The CRISP is inspired by the successful community refugee sponsorship program operating in Canada since the late 1970s, which has enabled more than 325,000 refugees to build a new life in Canada, in addition to those resettled under the government-funded resettlement program. Similar programs are now being implemented in many countries around the world, including the UK, US, NZ and Ireland.

How does it work?

A group of five or more adult volunteers (known as a ‘Community Supporter Group’ or ‘CSG’) provide 12 months of practical hands-on support to a refugee household from their date of arrival in Australia. CSGs can be based in a community anywhere in Australia, provided they can demonstrate capacity to provide appropriate support to a refugee household within that community.

Community Refugee Sponsorship Australia (CRSA) approve, train and support CSGs and connect them with a refugee household referred into CRISP.

Refugee participants identified as in urgent need of resettlement by the UNHCR are referred into the CRISP program by the Australian government. They come from a wide variety of countries; most have been waiting to resettle in a safe new country for a long time. Sadly CRSA cannot assist individual refugees who are overseas and wish to come to Australia – for more, please see our FAQs.

Hear from some everyday Australians who have put their hands up to welcome and support refugees to settle in their communities.

What types of support do Community Supporter Groups provide?

Community supporter groups assist refugees with some of their immediate needs on arrival and during their first 12 months in the country. This includes help with:

  • local orientation, including meeting refugees at the airport
  • initial income support (first 1-2 weeks) and temporary accommodation (estimated 4 – 6 weeks)
  • securing long-term housing
  • enrolling children in school
  • registering for Centrelink support
  • registering with other government services and language classes
  • accessing social opportunities and emotional support
  • opening bank accounts
  • learning English
  • using public transport
  • getting a driver’s license
  • finding a job or starting a business

How do I get involved?

Find out more about the program

Make sure this program is right for you by learning more about what’s involved:

    Form a group

    If you are an individual looking to find others in your area to form a group with, please post your interest on the CRSA Facebook group.

    Register your group's 'Intention to Apply'

    Let us know that your group is intending to submit a more formal application by registering your ‘Intention to Apply.’

    Next steps…

    After you register your group’s ‘Intention to Apply’ CRSA will be in touch.

    CRISP application form

    Invitation to training

    The CRISP is funded by the Australian Government Department of Home Affairs.