British businesses unite to support refugees seeking employment in the UK

by | May 23, 2022

A consortium of UK businesses is uniting to support charity Refuaid, who are helping refugees from Ukraine through their education and employment programme.

The UK Ukraine Business Consortium is a UK-based scheme to provide long-term support for refugees. It was established following the outbreak of war in Ukraine, with 45 UK businesses, including Marks & Spencer and ASOS, pledging their support for incoming refugees.


It’s reported that over 10 million people have been displaced since Russia invaded Ukraine, which has caused many to flee into neighbouring countries such as Poland, Romania, and Hungary. The Consortium has been established to address the layers of bureaucracy faced by people seeking refuge and employment in the UK.


Members of the Consortium are scaling their support for Refuaid, following a successful pilot scheme which involved mail company FDM, recruitment company Page Group, financial services provider PwC and private dental practice Portman Dental Group. The companies involved will each sponsor a set number of refugees through Refuaid’s education and employment programme. Not all of them will hire the people involved, only those with the relevant skillsets.


The Consortium is hoping to create long-term infrastructure which will benefit all refugees coming to the UK; Refuaid has supported over 800 people with access to language tuition, finance and employment. Without support from the government and businesses, refugees will often end up in positions which they’re overqualified for or remain unemployed. A 2017 Deloitte study of Syrian refugees in Europe found that although one-third were employed in either skilled work or professional services in Syria, 82% were unemployed in Europe.


“Forced migration is one of the leading issues of our generation. While governments must be called upon to provide safe and legal routes to sanctuary, more support is needed to enable people to rebuild their lives in the new communities they find themselves in.”

Anna Jones, Refuaid CEO


People who are arriving in the UK with existing qualifications that wish to enter into the hair, beauty and wellness industry can use the ENIC website to obtain a Statement of Comparability, which evidences the comparable level of overseas qualification. To find out more about the Statement of Comparability, click here.


Hair, beauty and wellness businesses who are offering employment to people with international qualifications can become members of ENIC to access a bank of information regarding international qualifications and their comparability to UK-based qualifications. To find out more click here; additionally for any queries regarding qualification checks for refugees, there is a dedicated team who can support you – contact them via

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