Important Principles & Agreed Practices
Rights of PSRs
Newcomer(s) may not be required to take membership in, volunteer for or participate in activities, meetings or functions associated with the sponsoring group in order to receive care, lodging and settlement assistance.
Newcomer(s) have no legal obligation, and cannot be made to enter into a legal obligation to prepay or repay their sponsors for care, lodging and settlement assistance.
Newcomer(s) with financial resources must contribute to their own basic financial support. If PSRs have personal financial resources, they will retain the right to manage their own finances. Newcomer(s) will not be required to submit their funds to the sponsor for management.
Newcomer(s) have the right to move anywhere in Canada. However if they voluntarily choose to move out of the sponsor's community, they may not be entitled to the continued support of their sponsor. Private sponsors should attempt to find another sponsoring group in the new community, however if they are unable to do so, the newcomer may not receive further sponsor support and will not be entitled to government assistance until after Month 12.
Code of Ethics
Sponsors are encouraged to develop opportunities to stimulate meaningful relationships between the newcomer and the sponsoring community. Strong relationships are vital for successful integration and allow the newcomer to feel they truly are part of the community of believers. It is important to remember many newcomers have had a traumatic past for which they will need time, encouragement and sometimes professional assistance in order to recover. Private sponsorship presents church sponsors (CGs) with an opportunity to demonstrate their love, mercy, justice and compassion for God's suffering children.
In loving (serving) our neighbour please be aware of:
- The power of generosity - there is an inherent power imbalance in the relationship between sponsors and the newcomer, act in ways that minimize the risk of oppression in the relationship.
- Maintaining the best interest of those served - treating the newcomer with dignity and respect
- Sponsors duty to act competently - recognize your own limits and make appropriate referrals to professionals
- Newcomer's right to self determination - allow informed consent on actions and goals which have been discussed. Be open to discussion of conflicting views.
- Respecting the newcomer's confidentiality and the privacy of their homes
- Ensuring the sponsoring community is a safe place to learn about new expectations and responsibilities
- Providing opportunities for the newcomer to give back to the sponsoring community
Confidentiality and Privacy
A basic guideline would be to envision how you would like to have your family's privacy and confidentiality ensured. Newcomer families may have been traumatized and are now in a new community and culture which they do not know or understand. The trust you develop with newcomers will depend to a great extent on how they perceive you are willing to guard their privacy and safety.
Some basic dos:
- Do telephone first or make an appointment before going over to the newcomer’s home. It allows them to know that their home is theirs.
- Knock and wait for an invitation to enter their homes.
- Discussion within the sponsorship group around practical aspects of settlement is important, but those matters which are very personal should be discussed on a need to know basis only among those who are directly involved in providing support.
- In accessing support from other community organizations or schools, act as a liaison to connect the newcomers directly with the support service.
- Do not publish, promote or distribute to anyone or any organization the names, address and telephone number of any member of the newcomer’s family without their specific permission.
- Do not discuss their private and personal affairs with any individual or any member of an organization without their permission.