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YMCA seeks help to rehouse Ukrainian nationals in Simcoe County

Sixty-one people need to find permanent, affordable housing
Help is needed to find housing for Ukrainian nationals living in Barrie.

In partnership with the County of Simcoe, the YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka is seeking to rehouse 61 Ukrainian nationals currently living in a repurposed long-term care facility in Barrie.

With the facility set to close on June 30, the YMCA is asking the community for help in finding permanent, affordable housing for these individuals and families.

Numerous families in Ukraine have been displaced due to political and social unrest, forcing them to flee to Canada in search of safety.

“Many individuals and families who arrived from Ukraine received temporary housing, but now the focus is on finding permanent accommodations for them as they begin to re-establish their lives,” explained Yana Skybin, housing co-ordinator at the YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka.

Here are some ways the YMCA is seeking community support:

  1. Housing identification: Help locate and identify available housing in Barrie or the surrounding areas of Simcoe County. The most urgent need is for two-bedroom apartments, one-bedroom apartments, and full houses.
  2. Volunteering: In June, the Y is looking for volunteers with trucks or larger vehicles to help move the residents into their new homes.
  3. Furniture donations: New or gently used furniture donations are being accepted to help furnish these homes.

“The transformative power of a permanent home cannot be understated,” said Jill Tettmann, CEO, YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka. “A key step towards fostering community belonging is securing permanent housing. It provides a foundation for mental and physical well-being, facilitates access to education and employment opportunities, and inspires hope for a better future.”

To get involved please contact Yana Skybin, the YMCA housing co-ordinator at [email protected] or call 705-716-4378.

“We welcome any support, whether it comes through housing options, volunteering, donating furniture, or connecting us with potential landlords who will participate in this humanitarian effort,” said Skybin.

“We can make a profound impact on the lives of these Ukrainian citizens who seek safety, stability, and the chance to rebuild their futures by coming together as a community,” added Tettmann. “As our community welcomes these families and individuals, let us demonstrate our generosity and compassion by helping them thrive.”