‘It seemed like fate’, a Manitoba woman wants more people to take in Ukrainian refugees – Winnipeg

Kyrylo and Anastasiia Ovcharenko landed in Winnipeg two weeks ago after fleeing the Ukraine, and say the support from the Petersfield and Gimli community so far has been incredible.

“You can’t even imagine that people here are so friendly,” Ovcharenko said.

The couple fled war-torn Ukraine, despite leaving friends and family behind. Ovcharenko says that while she’s happy to be in Canada, it’s hard to fully celebrate because there’s still so much destruction at home.

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“It’s hard to put into words,” Ovcharenko said.

The young couple is staying with Diane Grocholski and her husband near Petersfield, north of Winnipeg.

They logged on to a website called https://icanhelp.host/ where Grocholski had posted his home.

“We’ve been so successful on the website,” said Grocholski, who says he had to get verified first.

The Ukrainian couple first found a job at a local farm through a YouTube channel; That’s when they found the post for Grocholski’s house, which was just a few minutes from the farm.

“It seemed like fate, it seemed like it was meant to be that they stay with us and we can set them up and get them ready for their new jobs.

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Grocholski says via the website that he has already lined up two more families to stay in the Petersfield area.

When it comes to lodging, Grocholski says he wishes more people knew how rewarding it can be to help those in need.

“They are so young, and we were that age once … and we had a safe place and opportunities and they deserve the same,” he said.

As for Ovcharenko’s feeling, it is mutual.

“We are very grateful for Diane and everyone,” Ovcharenko said.

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