Appeal demonstrates generosity of Perth Catholic community

22 Dec 2022

By Contributor

A woman who sought refuge at the Sviatohirsk Cave Monastery, as Russia’s attack on Ukraine continues, walks by sandbags in Sviatohirsk, Ukraine, 9 December, 2022. Photo: CNS/Shannon Stapleton, Reuters.

Six months ago, the West Australian Catholic Migrant & Refugee Office (WACMRO) sent out an invitation to the Catholic community inviting parishioners to make a financial donation towards the Ukrainian Displaced Persons Local Appeal.

The purpose of the Appeal was to provide emergency relief to newly arrived Ukrainian nationals in Perth.

The Appeal demonstrated that the local Catholic community was willing and able to do two things:

“Part of the genius of the Catholic parish is that it can do both these things and do them well,’ said WACMRO Director, Deacon Greg Lowe.

“The generosity from the parishes in these difficult economic times has been staggering. We raised over $8,000 which has now been spent,” he said.

“Donations came from parishes, individual parishioners, anonymous donors and parish schools. I want to say thank you to everyone who contributed.”

Local resident Alla gathers belongings of her neighbour, who was killed in recent shelling, in a destroyed house in the course of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict in Donetsk, Russian-controlled Ukraine, 10 December, 2022. Photo: CNS/Alexander Ermochenko, Reuters.

Deacon Greg continued by explaining that in partnership with the St Vincent de Paul Society, who also made a significant financial contribution, WACMRO assisted 28 newly arrived families, mainly mothers and children.

Over a period of four-months, multiple electronic vouchers were sent to the mobile phones of Ukrainian asylees in a timely manner for the immediate purchase of much-needed food and clothing.

Dcn Greg observed that many of the women and children had now been linked into the support networks but assistance for the displaced Ukrainian community was still needed.

Local resident Pavel gathers belongings of his neighbour, who was killed in recent shelling, in his neighbour’s house destroyed in the course of Russian-Ukrainian conflict in Donetsk, Russian-controlled Ukraine, 10 December 2022. Photo: CNS/Alexander Ermochenko, Reuters.

“Let us continue to support and pray for these people who through no fault of their own, have found themselves halfway across the world as strangers in a foreign land,” Deacon Greg said.

“At least they are safe and, importantly, they have been welcomed,” he concluded.