03/10/2015 07:22 EDT | Updated 05/10/2015 05:59 EDT

Rainbow Refugee Assistance Program extended for 2 years

A federal pilot program that helps bring gay refugees to Canada has been granted enough funding to survive the next two years.

The Rainbow Refugee Assistance Program receives third-party funding from Citizenship and Immigration Canada to help cover the cost of sponsoring overseas LGBT refugees to come to Canada. When the program started, $100,000 was set aside to help sponsor LGBT refugees within the private sponsorship stream.

Last month, activists from the Halifax-based Rainbow Refugee Association expressed concern the program would be cut, putting people in danger.

The federal program provides money to help LGBT refugees setup in Canada and three months of living expenses. The amount is approximately $3,000 for each refugee.

Citizenship and Immigration Canada says since 2011, the program has helped sponsor more than 30 refugees. Nine live in Nova Scotia.

Over the past 18 months, the Rainbow Refugee Association of Nova Scotia has sponsored five Iranians.