Two years of support for Ukraine

Ukraine Flag

Two years on from the Russian invasion of Ukraine, we’re continuing to support our Ukrainian guests and the East Hampshire residents who have opened their homes to them.

Find out more about our support for Ukraine

Saturday 24 February marks two years since the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Since the launch of the Homes for Ukraine scheme, we have welcomed more than 492 guests (approximately 232 families) to East Hampshire, the second highest total in Hampshire. We currently have 91 active hosts in East Hampshire accommodating approximately 162 guests. In total Hampshire has over 700 active hosts and more than 3,495 guests have arrived since launch of the scheme.

We have employed a Ukraine-focused Community Project Officer, Housing Advisor and (in partnership with Two Saints) Community Support Worker. The Housing Advisor and Community Support Worker both speak Ukrainian and work with families to support guests to move from host houses into their own privately rented homes, helping with school admissions and setting up bills.

Some highlights delivered the past year:

  • Two community events held in Alton (May 23) and Petersfield (June 23) – 155 guests attended, 27 organisations participated
  • Ran a host recruitment campaign in the summer of 2023 which generated 14 new expressions of interest
  • Children’s event with Everyone Active – 29 children aged between 18 months and 13 years attended the event (on Saturday 30 September 2023) which aimed to bring together Ukrainian children and parents for a relaxed social occasion.
  • Weekly yoga classes through the Get up and Go programme in Petersfield for Ukrainian adults aged 18 and over
  • We purchased seven homes for Ukrainian families (and one for refugees from Afghanistan) using government grants. These will ultimately be used for those in the district who need homes.

We have worked in partnership with several local organisations to ensure families have access to English language lessons, employment opportunities and local activities as well as support with applying for Universal Credit and benefits.

This year we will be continuing our vital support and shortly be sending out a survey for guests and current hosts to give us their views on what they want to see supported this year as well as running further children’s events based on the success of last year.

Cllr Adeel Shah, portfolio holder for Community Development and Engagement at East Hampshire District Council, said:

“Saturday is an anniversary that none of us would want to be commemorating.

“It’s hard to imagine what it must be like to be uprooted from your home and forced to leave with all you can carry, to live in an unfamiliar country for two years, worrying about friends and family that you may have left behind.

“EHDC will continue to support refugees from all backgrounds and the people who have made them welcome in the district in every way that we can.”

All hosts through the Homes for Ukraine scheme will receive monthly payments from Hampshire County Council. These payments have been confirmed to run until March 2025.

If you are thinking of becoming a host or are an existing host and would like further support for you and your guests, please email or complete our expression of interest form and one of the team will contact you to discuss this further.

Find out more about the support available for potential hosts and Ukrainian guests while they’re here on our website.