Situated at the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law, the Refugee Hub makes unique contributions to the study and practice of refugee protection by catalyzing cutting edge research with innovative programming to ensure we are contributing strong evidence-based policy and practice to the refugee space.

The Refugee Hub houses a number of flagship programs that engage in cutting edge research, community support & connection, and direct action on refugee issues.


Our Research portfolio includes exciting work on the UN Global Compacts for Migration and Refugees, the study of the intersection between refugee & criminal law, access to justice issues in Canada’s asylum system, and domestic and international policy work.

The University of Ottawa Refugee Assistance Project

The University of Ottawa Refugee Assistance Project (UORAP) seeks to address key access to justice concerns following the 2012 changes to Canada’s refugee system.

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Spotlight Grants

Each year, the Refugee Hub awards two Spotlight Grants to those undertaking academic research or developing projects on refugee-related issues at the University of Ottawa. A core tenet of the Refugee Hub’s mission is to foster a vibrant uOttawa community around refugee law and policy. To this end, Spotlight Grants aim to highlight and support the important work that leaders in our community are contributing in this area. Spotlight Grants contribute to the impact and profile of grantees’ initiatives by providing a modest financial contribution and communications support.

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Special Projects

Recognized for its expertise and its connections in the refugee community, every year the Refugee Hub engages with a number of strategic projects with partners, academics, and the student community at the University of Ottawa. This academic year (2017-2018), some of the projects within the Hub’s sphere include a research collaboration with Colombia University’s Global Policy Initiative in support of the Global Compacts process at the United Nations, a new student clinic which focuses on public legal interventions, and supporting several research projects in collaboration with the newly formed World Refugee Council.

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Refugee Law Research

The uOttawa Refugee Law Research Team (RLRT), founded and led by Professor Jennifer Bond, is an expert team of current and former Refugee Hub volunteer team members and contributors which provides legal research, analysis, opinion, and strategic support to various high-level domestic and international refugee initiatives.

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Our Programs housed the Hub are responsive, timely, and mobilize knowledge & best practice within the field. Our reach expands from asylum support to private sponsorship of refugees in Canada and abroad.

BVOR Fund – Blended Visa-Office Referred Program

The BVOR Initiative encourages participation in sponsorship through the Blended Visa Officer Program. In 2018 and 2019, the Refugee Hub, in partnership with community partners and founding donors the Shapiro Foundation and other Canadian donors, launched a time-limited fund to support the sponsorship of hundreds of refugees identified by the UNHCR. The goal of this initiative is to ensure no spots in the BVOR program remain unused.

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Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative

The Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative (GRSI) is a partnership between the University of Ottawa’s Refugee Hub, the Open Society Foundations, the Government of Canada, the UNHCR, and the Radcliffe Foundation.

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Canadian Cross Border Legal Coalition

The Canadian Cross Border Legal Coalition (CCBLC) is a network of canadian lawyers working to help those impacted by the us president’s discriminatory travel ban, in partnership with colleagues in the us and around the world.

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