'Helping Irish Hosts' To Hold...


'Helping Irish Hosts' To Hold Roadshow Calling On Cork People To Share Homes With Ukrainian Families

RedFM News
RedFM News

05:45 16 Jun 2023

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Over 80,000 displaced Ukrainians have arrived in Ireland since the war started. More than 1,100 of them are living with hosts in Cork. Many more still urgently require accommodation. The need for hosting has not gone away.

In the midst of a wider housing crisis, the state has run out of emergency accommodation for new arrivals from Ukraine. The catastrophic destruction of a dam in the Kherson region on 6th June has left more than 40,000 people displaced. Ukrainians are arriving in Ireland every week seeking safety and a soft landing. Their homes have been destroyed and their lives turned completely upside down.

Helping Irish Hosts (HIH), an organisation that arose in direct response to the Ukraine Crisis, is appealing to Cork residents to come forward to offer a room in their home or a self-contained property. Hosting is a critical and increasingly well resourced refugee pathway. HIH exists to support hosts in finding suitable, sustainable matches and providing information and guidance throughout the entire hosting journey.

Helping Irish Hosts Co-Founder and CEO Angie Gough says, “Hosting is not a long term solution to the crisis we are in, but hosts and host communities are beating a path to something better - for ALL displaced people - and learning loads about ourselves and each other along the way. It's hard. It’s true solidarity. It's human kindness in action. Helping Irish Hosts is here to help set hosts up with all the tools you need to host in your home. We are asking more people to step up and take action. We need more hosts.”

HIH is going around the country with their Host Information Roadshow to celebrate the local community response and recruit more hosts. The Roadshow is rolling into Cork on 21st June at 7pm in the Midleton Family Resource Centre to provide up to date information on what’s involved in hosting displaced Ukrainians and how to go about it.

The evening will be hosted by seasoned host, active community member and RTE Grow It Yourself presenter, Karen O’Donohue, who’ll be joined by other local hosts and their Ukrainian guests to share their experiences, alongside experts from Helping Irish Hosts, NASC and other support organisations.

Karen and her family have been hosting since the early days of the crisis. She says, “For us, there was no question, we had to do something. At the end of the day, I want to be able to say I stepped up to help during this crisis. Hosting is a responsibility, but it's also a privilege. I’ve seen directly the impact it is having on people’s lives - providing a sense of safety to mothers fleeing with their children.”

Karen has provided accommodation to multiple Ukrainian families since the beginning of the war, many of whom have gone on to work and live independently in the community. She adds, “Everybody can do something. If you can’t host, help a host you know. Donate. Volunteer for transport… This is a wartime effort. Take action in whatever way you can. If nothing else, come along to the Roadshow and hear what it’s all about.”

Ireland has been leading the way when it comes to hosted accommodation for refugees. Join the 6,000 other hosts in Ireland supporting over 10,000 Ukrainians and sign up today.

The Host Roadshow series is brought to you by Helping Irish Hosts in partnership with The Irish Red Cross, Peter McVerry TrustThe Open Community, The Irish Refugee Council, Doras, Nasc, Ukrainian Action, The One Foundation, The Community Foundation, Choose Love and the Dept of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration & Youth. Coming soon to a town near you.

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