Sefton Council marks Ukraine Independence Day

24 August 2023 4 min read

As the world celebrates Ukraine’s Independence Day, Sefton Council Leader Cllr Ian Maher has sent his best wishes to Ukrainians across the world, including those who are currently living in Sefton and to those households across the Borough who are hosting them.


Cllr Maher said: “Sadly, a significant number of people from Ukraine have now been living in Sefton for well over a year having been driven from their own country as a result of Russia’s illegal war.

“Initially, they came to live with Sefton households who had kindly thrown open their homes to welcome them and some are still living with their local hosts.

“However, I am pleased to see that while I am sure those Ukrainian visitors would prefer to be in  their own country and safe from Vladimir Putin’s aggression, many of them are forging lives for themselves here in Sefton. They have found employment and the are moving on from their hosts’ households into homes of their own.”

Around 120 Sefton households have provided safe places for approaching 250 children and adults to live through the national Homes for Ukraine scheme.

Community leader

Cllr Maher continued: "One Ukrainian mother who arrived in Sefton with two teenage sons is now working as manager of the Ukrainian Welcome Centre set up by volunteers in Blundellsands Methodist Church.

"After initially attending the Welcome Centre, where she volunteered as a translator at DWP advice clinics, she successfully applied for the centre manager job and has become a community leader advocating for displaced Ukrainian people.

"She has found private rented accommodation within walking distance of her sons’ school and recently received a short visit from her husband, the boys’ father, who was not allowed to travel by Ukrainian authorities due eligibility to play a part in defending his country."

He added: "That is just one of the many positive stories of Ukrainian residents forging new lives in Sefton, and I would like to pay tribute to them and to the efforts of individuals and organisations dedicated to supporting them.”


Alan Lewis from the Ukraine Welcome Centre in Blundellsands said: "The Ukraine Welcome Centre has worked closely with the Resettlement Team from Sefton Council since March 2022. 

"We were all still learning together but the team have been really responsive to the needs of hosts and guests that many crises have been averted.

"The team have been pro-active in developing the needs of the Ukraine community and coming up with solutions.  It is remarkable at how successful they have been in helping guests settle in their own tenancies.  It is a real success story.”

Well supported

Olena, a Ukrainian now living in Sefton, said: "I have felt very welcome in Sefton and am now settled in my own property with a job I am thoroughly enjoying. 

"I have been very well supported by the Resettlement Team in Sefton and work closely with them to support other Ukrainian people.”

To show solidarity with Ukraine and mark Ukrainian Independence Day, Sefton Council is lighting up The Atkinson in Southport and Southport Town Hall in blue and yellow on Thursday 24th August.

'Thank you' payments

In December 2022, Sefton Council introduced ‘thank you’ payments for Sefton households hosting Ukrainian guests. Payments depend on the number of Ukrainian guests being hosted and range from £75 for households with one guest to £200 for those with six.

You can use this link to find out more about Homes for Ukraine in Sefton.

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