Dear Family and Friends and the greater Atikokan Community,
Brian & I, together with our children, their Grandparents, Rod and Carrol, our staff and community members, are trying to help Displaced Ukrainian families out of refugee camps.
Currently, we have three families that we have offered employment to. One, in Austria; One in Belgium and one in Greece. At this time, 2 families have visa and their travel documents, we have travel arrangements organized for the family in Greece and are currently waiting for more airline information from the family in Austria. The family in Belgium is still waiting for their visas.
The plan is for us to provide employment and all the necessities for the summer here at camp for these three families so that they can save some money and regroup while they plan their next steps. After great conversation, we have decided to expand our goal to help more families. Whereas we may not be able to provide immediate employment for other families, we desperately want to provide a safe and softer place for them to land- allow their children a chance to be kids, give them some hope and show them, love.
According to the Ukrainians that we have spoken to, along with all of the organizations and MPs that we have reached out to over the past 37 days, there is almost no help from our government to try to evacuate families from refugee camps. It is not like other conflicts where we've seen our government send planes over to gather as many people as possible and have an action plan on how to settle everyone. No settlement plan exists or has been announced other than the promise of making it easy to obtain visas and other necessary documents. The rest has been left up to the displaced, and it's by God's grace, volunteers, and people chaining grassroots support together that people are getting out. Imagine leaving everything behind, not having a home to go back to, and figuring out your next steps to protect your family and secure their safety from a roadside camp. That is something that I hope none of us ever experience, and I believe that it iour duty as family and friends, to help lessen the bruden and relieve some stress even if only for a few.
Here's why we are asking for help and have such a large goal:
We are fortunate to have a facility here at camp that can house 28 people with potential for more, as well as dedicated and caring staff on site 24/7. As mentioned earlier, we would like to be able to provide a soft place for people to land, regroup and plan their next steps. We have volunters from the community in many different professions such as mental health specialists, spiritual leaders, medical professionals and early childhood learning professionslas to name name a few, ready and willing to help.
We understand from contacts in Southern Ontario as well as through various social media groups dedicated to matching hosts with diplaced famillies that many Ukrainians are arriving in our major cities with no support, access to immediate jobs or housing or even a basic understanding of French or English in a bid to escape the Russian Occupation.
As a result, we feel called to help in any way we can and are dedicated to this humanitarian cause as long as we can financially support it.
Therefore, to help sustain the efforts of all our volunteers and to assist as many Displaced Ukrainians as possible, we are asking for donations to help support the following:
2. Clothing and;
Again, our goal is to provide a soft place for as many as possible to land, regroup and plan their next steps with intention and a clear mind. Once they have a plan and are able to move on, we would like to continue the process and bring additional families over to continue the cycle. Therfore, the more we are able to raise, the more children we are able to help!
Any donation provided is greatly appreciated.
Thank you & Much Love,
Brian, Anya, Family, Staff & Volunteers!