First Contact Vancouver

Assistance for Refugee Claimants

If you are a refugee claimant requiring assistance, please phone Red Cross First Contact:

(604) 787-8858 or 1-866-771-8858
and download:
Information for Refugee Claimants

Many refugee claimants arrive in British Columbia with minimal resources and may face the daunting reality of being homeless. They are often unaware of what services are available to help them and may have no one to confide in.

Refugees face multiple barriers that can include language, financial constraints, and a lack of familiarity with government agencies, service providers, the transportation system and geography.

Refugee claimants are more likely to access Red Cross First Contact because they are already familiar with the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement in their countries of origin.

How First Contact Helps
Canadian Red Cross First Contact provides assistance to refugee claimants in 60+ languages to help them avoid becoming marginalized, distressed and exploited.

First Contact Services
  • Emergency support for refugee claimants including safe shelter, clothing, transportation and food for up to 72 hours.
  • Referrals to settlement agencies, legal, paralegal, health, government and other services and resources.
  • Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) in Vancouver will help provide a Red Cross Information Kit for Refugees (produced in multiple languages) to claimants at all ports of entry, in detention, and at IRCC offices. The kit provides vital information for people arriving in Canada as well as the First Contact 24-hour phone number (604) 787-8858 or 1-866-771-8858. The Information Kit for Refugees is also available for download at the bottom of this page, or printed copies can be found at some community agencies, public libraries, shelters, and community centres throughout Metro Vancouver.
Coalition of Agencies
The Red Cross has helped build a coalition of more than 60 agencies, including the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, that works collaboratively to assist refugee claimants. The Red Cross helps those agencies build capacity within the sector to better address the needs of vulnerable clients.

If you are a refugee claimant requiring assistance, please contact:
(604) 787-8858 or 1-866-771-8858

For more information on volunteering or to donate, please contact:

Getting Started Guides
English – Getting Started Guide for Refugee Claimants in B.C.
French – Getting Started Guide / Préparez une Demande de Statut de Réfugié

Information Maps for Refugees
English – Metro Vancouver Map for Refugee Claimants

Information Kits for Refugees
English – Information Booklet for Refugee Claimants in B.C.
Arabic – Information Booklet / معلومات الى طالبي اللجوء
French – Information Booklet /  Informations Pour Les Demandes De Statut De Réfugié
Korean – Information Booklet / 한국어  난민신청자를 위한 정보
Spanish – Information Booklet / ESPAÑOL Informacion Para Solicitantes De Refugio

Refugee Claims Process Information
English – Refugee Claims Process
Arabic – Refugee Claims Process / آلية طلب اللجوء في كندا
Simplified Chinese – Refugee Claims Process / 加拿大对难民申请的程序
Traditional Chinese – Refugee Claims Process /加拿大對難民申請的程序
Farsi – Refugee Claims Process / مراحل درخواست پناهندگی در کانادا
French – Refugee Claims Process / Processus de règlement des demandes de statut de réfugié au Canada
Korean – Refugee Claims Process / 캐나다에서 난민 신청 절차
Romanian – Refugee Claims Process / Procedeul Necesar Pentru Obtinerea Statutului de Refugiat in Canada
Spanish – Refugee Claims Process / Proceso de Solicitud de Asilo en Canadá
Russian – Refugee Claims Process / Процесс оформления на беженство в Канаде