Ukrainian refugees: Families fleeing Russian invasion have arrived in South Yorkshire, says council

Two families of Ukrainian refugees fleeing the invasion of their home by Russia have arrived in South Yorkshire.

Sunday, 20th March 2022, 6:36 am

Nearly four weeks after Russia began its internationally condemned attack on Ukraine, Sheffield City Council says two displaced families have now been settled in the city.

It is believed they are being taken in by Sheffield homeowners under the Government sponsored scheme to offer £350 a month to residents who offer to host families.

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A woman walks with two children as Ukrainian refugees cross the Ukrainian-Romanian border in Siret, northern Romania, on March 19, 2022. - More than 3.3 million refugees have now fled Ukraine since the Russian invasion, the United Nations said on March 19, 2022, while nearly 6.5 million are thought to be internally displaced within the country. (Photo by Armend NIMANI / AFP) (Photo by ARMEND NIMANI/AFP via Getty Images)

Councillor Paul Wood, lead member for refugees, said in a statement: “No one can see the daily news about Putin’s murderous war on the Ukrainian people without being heartbroken.

“The vast majority of Ukrainians coming to the UK will be women, children and the elderly as the men stay to fight.

“It is important that we understand the difference between asylum and refugees. The Ukrainians are seeking asylum. Most of them will return home as soon as they can.

“As the lead member for refugees on the city council, I have had many meetings in the past week to ensure the city is ready to deal with them. We have a dity to ensure those arriving in the city have all the services that coming from a war ravaged country they will need, education for the children, medical support and emotional support.

“The city council will step up to support every Ukrainian refugee that comes to Sheffield as we have for generations, and pray and hope this situation will soon be over for them.”

The Government scheme – dubbed ‘Homes For Ukraine’ – comes after a u-turn by No.10, after Home Secretary Priti Patel initially insisted that no Ukrainian refugees would be allowed into the country without a valid visa.

Phase one of the scheme commenced on March 18. To begin with, only those with “known connections” to Ukrainian refugees will be able to take them in.

However, Michael Gove also promised that the scheme will “rapidly expand in a phased way”.

When a sponsor takes a refugee in, they must continue to provide accommodation for them for at least six months, the government states.

It is unknown how many Ukrainian refugees will be homed in Sheffield.