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What assistance can refugees get in Canada?

The Canadian government has several programs to help refugees resettle in Canada.

Refugee claimants, Convention refugees and persons in need of protection have certain rights and may be able to access services, such as health care and education.
There are also several programs to help you get settled in Canada, including:

Health Care

Some refugees and refugee claimants are eligible for the Interim Federal Health (IFH) program. The IFH program pays for emergency medical services after you arrive in Canada and until you are covered by a provincial health care plan.

Find out more in What is the Interim Federal Health (IFH) program?

Starting January 1, 2014, refugee claimants who are not eligible for the IFH program may be eligible for the Ontario Temporary Health Program.

Financial Assistance

Under the Resettlement Assistance Program (RAP), some resettled refugees can get:

  • Assistance at the airport or port of entry;
  • Temporary accommodation and help to find permanent accommodation;
  • Money to buy basic household items and clothing; and
  • Information and assistance to settle in Canada.

Get a list of RAP service providers in Ontario.

Under the Immigration Loans Program, some refugees can get a loan to pay for:

  • The costs of medical examinations abroad;
  • Travel documents;
  • Transportation to Canada; and
  • Housing rental, telephone deposits and work tools.

Loans must be repaid and interest may be charged.

Settlement Assistance

Settlement agencies provide services to refugees and other newcomers. These services are intended to help you adjust to your new life in Canada.

They can help you with translation and interpretation, language training, job-related services and more.
For more information, read What are settlement services?

Search for settlement services near you in Services Near Me.

For More Information

  • Canada's Refugee System - Information from Citizenship and Immigration Canada about how refugees come to Canada and how the system works.
  • Ready Tour - A free program that can help you to learn how to navigate the refugee hearing process and answer the first questions you have after you receive the notification for your hearing. From the Coalition of Service Providers for Refugee Claimants
Last Updated: December 10, 2013
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