On October 25th I sent to the Millstone the story of Iryna and Sasha, Ukrainians who have fled the war zone and settled in Almonte.
Since then, people in Almonte have donated furniture, bedding, clothes, dishes, kitchen supplies, food, phones, time, money, and more. The firm I work for (Tiree) donated two laptops.
The empathy in Almonte for those who have had to leave their homes due to Russia’s invasion is palpable. In the week after Iryna’s and Sasha’s story was posted, a great deal was accomplished: jobs were found for them – both started this past week at our local Independent grocery (in the bakery department, so far), they have social insurance numbers, and, having secured a furnished apartment with most of the essentials, Lissie and I moved them into it last weekend!
The rents in Almonte are high, and we have taken in donations to help them meet rent through the first several months. They are amazed by the generosity of total strangers. Things have gone well and we are quite happy that Iryna and Sasha will augment our multicultural Canadian landscape just a little more. On that note, you should know that I have eaten borscht for lunch eight times since they arrived.
Iryna and Sasha are here on a three-year visa, with the possibility of a three-year extension or application to stay longer. This, they will decide after they adjust to life in Almonte. So far, they love our little town and enjoy walking everywhere.
To thank our generous Almonte community, we are hosting an appreciation event at Equator, Wednesday, November 16th from 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM. We hope other displaced Ukrainians in Almonte will come out to meet Iryna and Sasha, and will be joined by locals of Ukrainian descent who might be able to greet them in their mother tongue!
If wish to help Iryna and Sasha in their transition to Almonte, please contact Rick Edwards at 613.355.0167, or email@example.com.