Calgary support societies work together to provide welcome for Ukrainians

A number of community groups, dedicated to helping immigrants to Calgary, are now working together to collect donations for Ukrainian refugees.

This weekend, the Dashmesh Culture Centre Gurdwara Sahib Calgary is collaborating with the Centre for Newcomers and the Calgary East Zone Newcomers Collaborative for a campaign to help with the Ukraine crisis.

“They’ve been through the tough times,” said Amanpreet Gill, the president of Dashmesh Culture Centre. “as Sikhs we believe in brother and sisterhood, and on humanitarian grounds we’re just here to help.”

However, the centre is encouraging all Calgarians to help with their work.

“We’re just trying to share that message that we’re all one, that we should all work together,” said Raj Sidhu, the director of operations at the Dashmesh Culture Centre.

“Please come to Dashmesh at 135 Martindale Blvd. N.E. between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. to drop off your donations of new clothing and blankets, grocery gift cards, non-perishable food items, cooking utensils, school supplies, books or toys,” the Centre for Newcomers said on Facebook Friday.

Millions of Ukrainians have fled the country so far as the Russian invasion of the country continues. Many of those refugees have entered Poland.

Meanwhile, Russia is being accused of deliberating firing at civilians, with the latest such attack reportedly killing 52 people and injuring more than 100 more at a train station in Kramatorsk.

The Centre for Newcomers says it’s unclear how many Ukrainians will be relocating to Canada, but whether its hundreds or thousands, they will be prepared.

“We are just expecting as many Ukrainian families as possible,” said Rabah Swaidek, the director of fund development at the Centre for Newcomers. “(We want) to be able to help support them, and whatever we have that’s left can go to other newcomers that are here, or just the community that’s in need.”

Monetary donations are also welcome. Full details about how to donate can be found online.

(With files from the Associated Press)

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