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Statement on Ukraine

Comment relative to the unfolding crisis in Ukraine

January 1, 2023 Update

The Bureau of Refugee Services at the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance has awarded 17 refugee service providers around the state more than $21.4 million under the federal Uniting for Ukraine (U4U) program to help the 14,000 Ukrainians who are living in New York after fleeing war in their homeland.  Catholic Charities Family and Community Services (CCFCS) was awarded $776,328 and its Refugee Resettlement Department will use this funding to help displaced Ukrainian families with transitional supports, community service navigation, employment, housing, food assistance and more.  Since April 2022, CCFCS has helped more the 700 Ukrainian individuals resettle in Rochester and expects to help hundreds more in the coming months.  For more information on the U4U program and how you can support our effort to help Ukrainian families coming to Rochester, please read on.

November 1, 2022

Since the Russian invasion on Feb. 24, 2022, nearly one-third of Ukrainians have been forced from their homes, representing the largest displacement crisis in the world. Today, 11 million Ukrainians have been registered as refugees and are living in countries around the world that have offered them shelter as the war continues with little indication of its resolution.

Many refugees have been coming to the U.S. through the Uniting for Ukraine (U4U) program. Uniting for Ukraine provides a pathway for Ukrainian citizens and their immediate family members to come to the United States and stay temporarily in a two-year period of parole. Ukrainians participating in U4U must have a supporter in the United States who agrees to provide them with financial support for the duration of their stay in the United States. More information from USCIS can be found here.

Since the beginning of the program in April 2022, over 150,000 U4U applications have been filed by persons across the United States. Rochester has one of the largest Ukrainian communities in NY and is the 16th largest American metro area participating in the U4U program with over 1,500 applications filed from our region. Rochester residents, faith-based communities and other organizations are playing a significant role in sponsoring Ukrainian refugees and then helping them resettle once they arrive. Since April, Catholic Charities Family and Community Services has helped over 200 Ukrainian families and expects to help resettle hundreds more in the coming months. Family and Community Services is now offering assistance in the following ways:

Our Refugee Resettlement Program is offering assistance with basic needs support, public benefits applications, transitional supports, and referral to other providers for health, education, and other needs.

Our Refugee Employment Program is offering assistance in employment preparation, job counseling, job search and placement.

Our Immigration Program is offering legal immigration assistance and referral for Ukrainians seeking Temporary Protected Status (TPS), Employment Authorization, Asylum, and Family Reunification through the Lautenberg Refugee Program.

For questions or assistance in any of the above areas or for general Ukrainian immigration questions, please contact Natasha Moshkovskiy at Natasha.Moshkovskiy@fcscharities.org.

Supporting our Local Effort

With the growing number of Ukrainians arriving to our area, we need the help of the community now more than ever. CCFCS is now accepting donations to directly help Ukrainian families coming to Rochester.

  • Financial assistance is urgently needed to assist our work with newly arrived families – particularly for food purchases, housing deposits and first month’s rent.
    • Your cash donation, and donations of food gift cards, are gratefully received! [Those who feel called to help us in this way may make a donation online today.
    • Donations of local grocery store gift cards will be provided to families to help them meet their ongoing needs, or used by our volunteers to set up a kitchen for a newly arriving family. Most requested cards are Aldi’s, Walmart and Wegmans.
  • Check out our Amazon Wishlist Link to learn of the items that our refugees currently need to help them resettle in Rochester.
  • Holiday meal and gift requests for our families will be coordinated for your convenience through our Share the Joy program.
  • We are accepting donation drop-offs at our office in 87 N. Clinton Avenue in downtown Rochester. Donations may be dropped off Tuesdays and Thursdays, between 12pm-4pm only.
  • Please contact our Volunteer Coordinator Christina Krewson at Christina.Krewson@fcscharities.org to learn more.