Advisory services for migrants in Poland

by Ewelina Nurczyk in: Legal & Taxes, 05 Jul 2017     0 Comments

Migrant services in Poland are designed to aid those who move here from abroad. What institutions are there to provide help and guidance for newcomers arriving in Poland? Here is our list of such organisations.

Urząd do Spraw Cudzoziemców

In English: The Office for Foreigners – a central institution overseen by the Polish Ministry of the Interior that deals with all matters regarding foreigners’ entry, stay and departure from the territory of Poland. It is also responsible for granting asylum, tolerated stay, temporary protection and other forms of humanitarian aid. It is also the appeal body for those unhappy with voivodeship’s decision regarding stay legalisation.

Urząd Wojewódzki 

In English: Voivodeship Office – 16 offices (one for each province referred to as a voivodeship in Poland) located in the country’s major cities (see the list of Voivodeship Offices in Poland). They are an institution of great importance – this is where you head first if you want to get a residence permit, work permit, extend or get a visa, or exchange some of these documents for new ones.

Do you think you need to pay them a visit?
See how to book an appointment in a Voivodeship Office in Poland.


There is a number of non-governmental organisations that operate in Poland and can serve as a point of contact for troubled foreigners staying in Poland. The most famous ones include: Polish Red Cross, Caritas Polska, Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights, Ocalenie Foundation, Amnesty International, and more. Please bear in mind that these organisations should be contacted first and foremost in deeply challenging situations, after all other means have been exhausted.

Student organisations

If you happen to study in Poland or participate in a student exchange programme, there is a big chance you can direct your doubts and questions to some sort of student network operating at your university, or even the university itself. A good example of an organisation promoting mutual help among its members is ESN for Erasmus exchange students.

Centres for foreigners

These institutions are designed for foreigners who have applied for the status of a refugee and receive benefits. Centres for foreigners are safe facilities providing shelter for the most troubled migrants fleeing life-threatening events in their home countries. There are 12 facilities of this kind, most of them located near the Polish border. 

See also

Visa to Poland

Visa to Poland

Learn about visa requirements in Poland – who needs them and how to obtain them?
Read more

How to make an appointment at Voivodeship Office

Appointment in Voivodeship Office

Some things need to be done at your nearest Urząd Wojewódzki (Voivodeship Office), where you can find departments for foreigners. See how to book your visit.
Read more

Poland in 2050 - how many foreigners?

Foreigners in Poland in 2050

In 2050 foreigners will constitute 12 per cent of Polish society. This is not a sci-fi scenario, but a forecast by Warsaw University researchers.
Read more

Ewelina Nurczyk

Ewelina Nurczyk


Contact the author

Editor at A graduate of English studies and Polish language and literature at Warsaw University, specialising in teaching Polish to foreigners. 

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