Welcoming Ukrainians: Community Supports and Resources
Please note that this page will be updated as more resources/information become available.
Ways You Can Help Newcomer Ukrainians arriving in the North Okanagan
DONATING FUNDS TO HELP UKRAINIANS:
Locally: Slavic United Network is a registered charity accepting monetary donations and goods to be collected for incoming Ukrainians to the North Okanagan. www.vernonslavic.org/sun
FUNDING AIR TRAVEL:
As of April 20, Canadians and Canadian companies can donate their Aeroplan points through the Air Canada and Miles4Migrants websites. Canadians who would like to donate cash can do so through the Travel & Settlement Fund at the Jewish Foundation of Greater Toronto, which will distribute these donations for the purposes of sponsoring displaced Ukrainians. Tax receipts will be issued for donations above $10. These partners are inviting Canadians to donate, with the goal of bringing at least 10,000 Ukrainians and their families on flights to Canada. In addition to a significant donation of 100 million Aeroplan points by Air Canada, The Shapiro Foundation will match donations by Canadians, with a donation equivalent of up to 50 million Aeroplan points.
VERNON AND DISTRICT IMMIGRANT AND COMMUNITY SERVICES SOCIETY
#100 3003 30 STREET, VERNON, BC V1T9J5
(Settlement Services are now available to temporary residents in Canada eligible under the Canada-Ukraine authorization for emergency travel (CUAET) until March 31, 2023. To learn more: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/news/2022/03/canada-expands-settlement-support-for-ukrainians-coming-to-canada.html)
OFFERING EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES:
Connect to the VDICSS Employment Services Coordinator - firstname.lastname@example.org - to share your local employment opportunities.
SUPPORTING PETS AND ANIMALS:
Ukrainian Resources and Information:
UKRAINIAN CANADIAN CONGRESS:
PROVINCE OF BC – WAYS TO HELP UKRAINIANS:
Welcome Ukrainians to Vernon - Frequently Asked Questions
1) Is there an information booth in the Vancouver International Airport:
The Red Cross and Ukrainian Canadian Congress BC has sent up a Welcome booth at the Vancouver airport to welcome Ukrainians and provide information and assistance.
2) Unvaccinated requirements:
Our newcomers who are not vaccinated are required to quarantine for 2 weeks. If they are staying with their relatives/friends, they need to have a room to self isolate and ways to get life necessities delivered; if they do not have such accommodations - CRC will take them to the hotel (transportation and accommodation is covered by the CRC). Canadian Red Cross
3) How can they get their work permit?
When they applied for the CUAETS visa, they were to also apply for the work permit application at the same time.
4) Is there someone speaking Ukrainian available to welcome them in Kelowna and assist with various translation needs in Vernon?
When they are ready to arrive to Kelowna, contact United Way BC#211 for local translators to assist with newcomers. Depending on newcomers’ needs, Vernon and District Immigrant and Community Services Society (VDICSS) may provide interpretation as well.
5) Can someone provide a seat booster or feeding seat; toys; car seats and strollers?
Please consider contacting Mamas for Mamas group. Kelowna Branch is located at 1735 Dolphin Ave Unit 120, Kelowna, BC V1Y 8A6.
6) When and how will they get financial aid from the government?
Awaiting announcement from the Federal Government.
7) Where can they go from English Lessons?
Vernon and District Immigrant and Community Services Society (VDICSS) offers free Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) classes. Free on-site childminding supports may be available. To register for free English classes, please call VDICSS at 250-542-4177.
8) How can they get their health care card?
Once they have a work permit and obtain a SIN#, they can apply for BC Medical either online or in-person at ServiceBC. VDICSS assists with Medical Services Plan (MSP) enrollment. To make an appointment, please call 250-542-4177.
9) Who will help them with resumes and join them for job interviews?
Nexus BC is still waiting for the new program Career Paths for skilled immigrants to see if we can serve; now it’s informal and only Anna Shultz.
WorkBC has expanded its service eligibility to include Ukrainians who participated in the CUAET program. VDICSS can assist with registration for WorkBC’s employment services. Please call 250-542-4177 to make an appointment.
10) What to do so that the children can go to school?
Contact the School District #22, as the BC Government has approved free schooling for Ukrainian children, but it is all set up through the individual school districts.
Vernon and District Immigrant and Community Services Society (VDICSS) can assist with school registration and transportation forms (if applicable).
11) How can they get a BC drivers license if they have an Ukrainian drivers license?
Newcomers to BC are allowed to use their international driver’s license for the first 90 days of being physically present in BC. During that time, they are encouraged to start working on their driver’s license exchange process. As Ukraine does not have a reciprocal arrangement with Canada, newcomers from Ukraine must pass both knowledge and road test before they can get their BC Driver’s License.
If ServiceBC requests translation of Ukrainian driver’s license, ICBC’s approved list of translators could be found under the following link: approved-translators.pdf (icbc.com)
Learn to Drive Smart manual: Learn to Drive Smart (icbc.com)
Online knowledge test practice: Take the practice knowledge test (icbc.com)
12) How to warn them from SPAM with phone calls and the Internet?
Vernon and District Immigrant and Community Services Society (VDICSS) shares information on spam calls and digital security. Canada Revenue Agency has various educational materials on this topic under the following link: Scams and fraud - Canada.ca.
13) How to obtain a cell phone without a credit card?
SIM cards and top-up vouchers are sold in many stores in Vernon. Most mobile service carriers offer prepaid (pay as you go) plans and do not require a credit card.
14) Who can assist with Vernon Public Transportation use?
Vernon and District Immigrant and Community Services Society can provide basic orientation to public transportation in Vernon (go over Vernon Transit’s bus routes and schedules, explain where to buy bus tickets and monthly passes).
For more information – go here: