PROVINCE OF UTRECHT – Various Utrecht municipalities are working around the clock to arrange shelter for Ukrainians.
Montfoort welcomes 39 refugees tomorrow evening. It concerns families with disabled children and their carers. The group is housed in the former Rabobank building on Hoogstraat. The Restored Reformed Church, initiator and owner, makes the building available immediately to provide assistance. It is not yet known how long the reception will last.
Preparations for the reception of the group of Ukrainian refugees are in full swing. The municipality ensures that the reception is done safely and carefully, but emphasizes that it is an initiative of the community. Montfoorter Kees van Dijke, who has been coming to Ukraine for years and has many contacts there, has brought the refugees to the Netherlands. Local residents of the former Rabobank have been informed about the reception by letter.
Meerkerk town hall
The municipality of Vijfheerenlanden is also working on a reception location. Meerkerk town hall is being prepared for the reception of eighty refugees from Ukraine. Mayor Sjors Fröhlich tweeted: “Beds and mattresses delivered, offices transformed into bedrooms. And the mayor’s chambers have to believe it too. With pleasure!”
Hotel in Utrecht
In Utrecht, several refugee families are currently being accommodated in the Van der Valk Hotel along the A12 in Kanaleneiland. For the time being, hotels are the simplest solution because people can go there right away. In this case, it concerns Ukrainians who report in Utrecht to, for example, the police or the city office.
The shelter that is now offered is fundamentally different from the shelter that is currently offered to other refugees in, for example, the Voorveldse Polder.
The 25 security regions were formally instructed by the cabinet last night to arrange two thousand reception places in each region for Ukrainian refugees in the short term. In addition, the mayors have agreed with the cabinet that they will ensure that the flow of Ukrainians and refugees from other countries does not compete with each other in locations.
The regions have almost completed the first 50,000 emergency places. “The regions are already looking for larger numbers,” says chairman Hubert Bruls of the Security Council, the mayor’s meeting of the chairmen of the security regions. The mayors are mainly looking for large-scale facilities such as vacant office buildings, hotels and “pavilions here and there” that are available for at least six months.
State Secretary Eric van der Burg said after the consultation with the mayors that “the municipalities rightly trust that the central government will bear the costs”. The first 25,000 places must be arranged within ten days, the other 25,000 a few weeks later, Van der Burg thinks. “If other things happen….this is a job that we have to do together”, said Van der Burg when asked if more places might be needed.
“We have mutually agreed to make every effort to deliver what the cabinet asks of us,” said Mayor Sharon Dijksma of Utrecht. According to her, it is “an immense puzzle” to be able to accommodate all refugees. “But it has to.”
The Jaarbeurs in Utrecht says it has had “a first contact” with the municipality and “has a lot of space”. Not all buildings will have constant events in the near future, a spokesperson said. He couldn’t say how much space there is.
Shelter Ukrainian pets
Shelter is not only necessary for Ukrainian refugees, their pets also need a safe home, according to the Dutch Federation of Animal Shelter Organizations (NFDO). The Foundation for Animal Aid Extension Woerden eo keeps the door open in animal shelter Reijerscop to temporarily take in pets of refugees from Ukraine in the Netherlands.