A number of Ukrainian refugee families have already arrived in southeastern Manitoba, and more are on the way.

Chris Goertzen co-chairs the Ukrainian Settlement Task Force.

He says "we have approximately 6 families that we know of at this time and we know that in the coming week or week and a half, we will have another 10 or 15 families depending on the situation and so it is not an insignificant number and it is manageable but it is certainly a big sacrifice and a welcome sacrifice for the host families that are hosting them."

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Another family that will be making the Southeast their homePerhaps unsurprisingly, Goertzen says many of the refugee families they have seen so far have been broken up in some way.

"We see a lot of families, often single mothers with a few children, sometimes multi-generation, whether it is a family with children, a mother and a grandmother, but one thing is very clear, many of them are leaving spouses and others back in Ukraine when they are here."

Goertzen says it is bittersweet. He notes they wish there was no reason for these refugees to be here in the first place, but notes it is also uplifting to see the Southeast rally around those in need.

"There is not a day, not even a few hours that go by where I don't get someone else asking how they can help and it is great. We have people who know the refugee and the newcomer story, they have it in their family and the need that is there and it is really encouraging to see."

Right now, Goertzen says they are trying to make sure there are enough host families for the incoming refugees. He notes they are working with a number of church groups, but notes anyone who is interested can reach out to him directly and he can redirect them in the right direction.