Nusrat Ghani, Conservative MP for Wealden, has visited the Ukrainian community support and social group, which meets weekly at the Hellingly Community Hub, to support Ukrainian families living in the Hailsham area.
Every Monday afternoon, the Ukrainian community and their hosts, or anyone who is considering becoming a host under the Homes for Ukraine scheme is invited to meet up at the Hellingly Community Hub to chat, make new friends and receive advice and support. The gatherings are free of charge and offer refreshments, activities for children, English lessons, mental health support and assistance with settling into the community.
According to the latest figures, 1,227 guests have arrived in East Sussex under the Homes for Ukraine scheme since its launch in March. Wealden is currently hosting 546 guests, which is twice as many as in any other district in the county, and amongst the top regions nationwide. The East Sussex County Council has recently decided to increase the monthly payments available to hosts by £150 per month between October 2022 and March 2023, as thank you for their continuous generosity, and to reflect the increased cost of bills over the winter.
Nusrat Ghani said: “I am immensely proud that Wealden has led the way in providing support to Ukrainian families fleeing the war and is hosting the most arrivals in East Sussex.
"I was pleased to meet some of the Ukrainian families living in and around Hailsham and volunteers from the East Sussex Ukraine Support, who led the coordination of local hosts with guests in Hellingly, and whom I have been liaising closely regarding visa applications, in order to secure faster arrivals to Wealden.
"I would like to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to all Wealden residents and volunteers involved in local support for the kindness and generosity they have shown to our Ukrainian guests over the past six months. I hope that hosts can continue to offer their homes and assistance, while the government keeps supporting Ukraine against Putin’s aggression.”