The Community Support Program

Following the Government’s establishment of the Community Support Program (CSP), the Department has now appointed Approved Proposing Organisations (APOs) who will be responsible for securing employment, managing the visa application process and overseeing the settlement of the CSP applicant.

Australian supporters and individuals wishing to assist a refugee should read the information on this webpage, then contact one of the APOs if they need more information or assistance.

What is the CSP?

The CSP enables communities and businesses, as well as families and individuals, to propose humanitarian visa applicants with employment prospects and to support new humanitarian arrivals in their settlement journey.

Under the CSP, Australian supporters (through an APO) are required to demonstrate they are able to provide adequate support to enable new arrivals to achieve financial self-sufficiency within the first year in Australia.

The 2017-18 Humanitarian Program includes 16,250 places, up from 13,750 places in 2016-17 and includes up to 1000 places for the CSP.

CSP applicants

CSP applicants must align with the regional, global and settlement priorities of the Australian Government, and be able to satisfy all Class XB (subclass 202) visa criteria.

See: Global Special Humanitarian visa (subclass 202)

Only APOs may propose applicants under the CSP.

Potential CSP applicants are not required to have existing links to Australia, and can be identified by an individual (such as a family member in Australia), a community organisation or a business with an interest in supporting refugees (known as ‘Australian supporter’) or by the APO.

The APO will screen potential applicants and Australian supporters against the requirements of the CSP and ensure suitable support is available for the applicant before proposing the applicant/s by lodging a Class XB (subclass 202) visa application.

To align with the settlement priorities of the Australian Government, the main applicant should:

  • be aged between 18 and 50
  • have functional English
  • have an offer of employment (or a pathway that leads to employment) or have personal attributes that would enable them to become financially self-sufficient within 12 months of arrival in Australia
  • be from a priority resettlement caseload.

Contact an APO for more information about applicant eligibility.

Approved Proposing Organisations (APOs)

There are ten APOs for the CSP. They are:

A small number of organisations with national coverage may be added in coming weeks.

These APOs were appointed in March 2018 through a competitive process. No further applications to become an APO are being accepted at this time. Any future APO recruitment will be advertised on this page.

The role of the APOs includes:

  • linking employers with prospective humanitarian applicants
  • lodging visa applications
  • ensuring the provision and management of settlement services following arrival in Australia, and
  • assisting entrants to become financially independent within the first 12 months of arrival.

Each APO may charge fees to cover the costs of their services. These costs will vary between APOs depending on their business model and the level of services they offer.

Australian supporters

Australian supporters are community members (including individuals and families), businesses and community organisations which work with APOs and enter into arrangements to propose, and support CSP entrants. Such arrangements would be a matter for the APOs and Australian supporters to determine.

Priority will be given to applicants willing to live and work in regional Australia and with appropriate support available in that location.

Costs

For each application, the APO must demonstrate their ability to provide adequate assistance to enable the applicant to achieve financial self-sufficiency within the first year of arrival in Australia. It is expected that this will be achieved through Australian supporters, who will fund:

  • visa application charges
    • AUD2,680 per application at the time of application
    • An extra AUD16,444 for the main applicant and AUD2,680 for each family member before a visa is granted
  • medical screening
  • airfares
  • settlement services.

APOs may charge a fee for the services they provide. The Department encourages applicants and their supporters to research the different APOs to find one that is best suited to their circumstances.

An assurance of support (AoS) is also required. General information about existing AoS requirements is available at Department of Human Services website. Further information regarding the AoS for CSP applicants will be available on the Department of Human Service's webpage as soon as arrangements have been finalised.

Frequently Asked Questions

See: Community Support Program (CSP) – Frequently Asked Questions (475KB PDF).