By Norah Bond

“Are you wondering how to help the Ukrainian community support their families seeking refuge here in Orihuela Costa?

I know most people do not know, but there is an official system in place to help those in need of help and support in cases of need, including people who arrive from Ukraine.

Friday, I received a call from the President of the Ukrainian Association for advice, how her group can support their community.  She is desperate to help the families arriving from their war torn country.

I immediately contacted Sonia Huertas who is an Advisor at the Town Hall Orihuela Costa. She instantly gave me the procedures to follow.

All Ukranian refugees need to follow the official protocols, which is to Register with Servicios Sociales, the Social Welfare Services.

First they have to apply for an appointment with social services (Alameda Del Mar has tripled the workers there only for the Ukrainian refugees) the telephone number for the appointment is 965306645

They will study each situation.

* If they need residential help they will be sent to Centro de Atencion Temprana de Alicante (CATE)

* In case they have families here in Orihuela Costa they will help them with:

  1. Asilo político – Political Asylum
  2. Padron
  3. Schooling
  4. SIP card (Healthcare)

Remember to take your passport as proof of identification.

Once registered, you can apply for more help from the Church Charity “Caritas” who offer advice and food.

Other help available – Cruz Roja, CEAR, Vega Baja Acog

Alicante (Social Services will direct them how to proceed) will provide them with a place to stay.

910474444  This is the phone number Generalitat gave to register if they are looking for location.

Five families have already arrived, including young children and a disabled young woman.  Three families have been offered accommodation, two more homes are needed urgently.

Should anyone want to offer a home, part of a house, room, sofa in their lounge, they need to be aware that the minimum time to hold Ukrainian refuges is one year legally.

This information is intended to help Ukranian refugees and anyone who is in need of a little help, whatever your age or nationality.

We are a compassionate caring community who look out for each other, our families and friends, in times of desperation, invasion and suffering.

As someone recently said, we are family, we are united, together we will help the integration of our European neighbours to live in harmony, safe from harm”.