The UK government’s austerity cuts have negatively impacted many voluntary-sector interventions that provided support to refugees. One such intervention, the Refugee Integration and Employment Service (RIES), is discussed in this paper. The RIES was a UK Border Agency-funded integration programme for recognised refugees and operated through voluntary-sector organisations nationwide. Findings of this small, qualitative study tentatively suggest that without bespoke support such as RIES, refugees will struggle to make informed and strategic decisions about their future education choices, restricting their ability to exercise autonomous agency. Current UK policy of counting refugees alongside other types of migrants will not cater for the specificity and multiplicity of issues faced by refugee young people. This will inhibit their opportunities and increase vulnerabilities, compounding their precarious position in UK society.

DOI: 10.1080/03057925.2013.841030
ISSN: 0305-7925