Friends of Ukraine
Towards the end of March 2022 the first Ukrainian nationals fleeing the war in Ukraine began arriving in Knaresborough. Chain Lane Community Hub linked with Harrogate District of Sanctuary and Harrogate Mind to work together to support this new community.
As of March 2023 there are 350 Ukrainian nationals in the Harrogate district, many of them children. Working together we have:
- Created a Ukrainian Support Network, bringing together key partners and stakeholders who are working with Ukrainians displaced by the war and their host families. We share information, coordinate activities and plan for future needs.
- Employed a Ukrainian national, Elina, to provide coordination of activities as well as conversational English classes. This role is key to enable us to access the Ukrainian community and for them to raise issues and concerns with someone who speaks their language
- Provided weekly meetings at the Acorn Centre providing information, advice and opportunities to meet and make friendships
- Supported access to and coordination of English lessons which take place at Harrogate College, Roberts Street Centre, Chain Lane Community Centre and on-line
- Supported NYCC’s employability service to support people into jobs
- Liaised with housing authorities and private landlords to help people move on from their hosts to independent accommodation
- Facilitated social events at Chain Lane Community Centre, bring people together to have fun and build on their friendships and networks
Local businesses have also played their part and we are grateful to Morrisons, Bettys and Taylors, Verity Frearsons, Knaresborough Football Club and others for their support.
If you would like to get involved or support this project, or if you are a host family, please get in touch. We have a private/closed Facebook group for our Ukrainian community and hosts and have a website full of information and resources. Knaresborough Friends Of Ukraine | Facebook