Supporting Ukraine and its people

Settling in

Council services and support

Customer hub

Our team of specialists, with an interpreter, can

  • give advice and help with applying for benefits and grants
  • direct to you to other services such as housing, schools and English classes
  • give you the rest of your £200 resettlement grant if you are living in Edinburgh on the Homes for Ukraine and Super Sponsor scheme.

On a Tuesday and Thursday, you can also speak to specialists from our Advice Shop and the Department of Work and Pensions.

We are based in our Customer Hub at 249 High Street, EH1 1YJ. We are open Monday to Friday from 10am to 12 noon and 2pm to 4pm. You do not need an appointment to come to our Customer hub.

Please be aware –

  • we can only give resettlement grants and bus passes to people living in the Edinburgh area - if you are living in another council area, you must contact the council in that area.
  • we can only give one 20-journey bus pass per person to help you initially (we are not able to provide passes for repeat requests). In Scotland, people over 60 years and young people under 22 years can apply for a free bus pass. You can apply for this when you have a home address.

Applying for places in schools

Children from Ukraine have the same right to schooling as all other children in the UK (until the age of 18). We will offer a place in one of our schools for your child or children at no cost.

We can only enrol children in a school when they have arrived in Edinburgh. When you arrive and you have a home address, contact the local school in the area where you are living. This is known as the catchment school. Find your local school using our interactive map.

The school will ask to see:

  • your passport
  • your child’s passport
  • your child’s birth certificate
  • your visa document
  • proof of home address such as a bill or Universal Credit (DWP) letter.

Talk to the school if you do not have all these documents.

Please be aware that some of our schools are full. We may have to place your child in school in another catchment area. We will help with transport to the school and back home can be given where this happens. 

If your catchment school is full, please email education.enquiries@edinburgh.gov.uk. One of our senior education officers will contact you with a list of schools that do have spaces. More information about applying for a place in a school (in English).

Council tax sopport

Council Tax is an annual fee the council charges people who live in the council area. It goes towards services like rubbish collection and libraries. The rules have been changed for people from Ukraine who are seeking refuge in Edinburgh. If you lived in the Ukraine on 31 December 2021 and left after 24 February, you will not have to pay council tax. 

Council's Advice Shop

Our team can give advice on benefits, welfare rights, debt, tax credits and grants. Telephone

0131 200 2360

email advice.shop@edinburgh.gov.uk

Social Care Direct - adults and children

If you need support telephone

0131 200 2324

email socialcaredirect@edinburgh.gov.uk

Other organisations in Edinburgh

English for speakers of other languages

Edinburgh has a developed network of providers offering English for speakers of other languages (ESOL) courses. These courses can help people with limited or no English language to improve their skills and those keen to gain academic qualifications. People coming to Edinburgh from Ukraine, hosts and other people looking after these visitors may find this Connect Here guide helpful.

Edinburgh Leisure

As part of your welcome to the city, Edinburgh Leisure would like to offer you free access to physical activity for 6 months through our Relocated People Programme.

The relocated people access card provides free access to Edinburgh Leisure gyms for over 16’s, individual and family swimming sessions and badminton court hire.

You can also apply for a Junior RPA card for any young people aged under 16 in your care. It provides free access to swim sessions, NRG Zone gym sessions and badminton, table tennis and tennis court hire. To apply please complete this online form and we will get your card out to you in the post within 14 days. Relocated People Card Online Form.