Members of the South Vancouver Island Women’s Institute hand over a $3,156 cheque to the Cowichan Intercultural Society for a special summer English language class for Ukrainians who have recently arrived in Cowichan. A special shout out to Leon Signs for donating the super-sized cheque free of charge. (Submitted photo)

Members of the South Vancouver Island Women’s Institute hand over a $3,156 cheque to the Cowichan Intercultural Society for a special summer English language class for Ukrainians who have recently arrived in Cowichan. A special shout out to Leon Signs for donating the super-sized cheque free of charge. (Submitted photo)

Local groups step in to help Ukrainians in the Valley learn English

More than $3,100 raised at fundraiser for program

The South Vancouver Island Women’s Institute has raised more than $3,100 to donate to the Cowichan Intercultural Society for the Ukrainian Welcome Program, a special summer English language class for Ukrainians who have recently arrived in Cowichan.

So far, seven Ukrainian adults and six children will benefit from the program, which will include English instruction, childcare, transportation, lunches, and a graduation for the new arrivals.

This program, which runs from Aug. 2-25, will support newly arriving Ukrainians in meeting one another and members of the wider community, as well as in practicing English.

Funds for the program were raised at an event held at Duncan United Church on June 15.

“We are pleased to announce that the $3,156 raised at our Tea and Fashion Show is going to help new Ukrainian refugees with an English as a second language course this summer,” said Donna Jack, president of the South Vancouver Island District Women’s Institute.

“This will help adults find jobs as well as preparing students for classes this fall. We want to thank the Duncan United Church for donating their hall and the Vintage Fashion Showcase for donating their time and gas for our entertainment, and finally to the Women’s Institute branches in the South Vancouver Island District for donating their time and supplying the refreshments for the afternoon tea.”

Amanda Vance, executive director of the Cowichan Intercultural Society, said the CIS is thrilled to be offering this program.

“We are welcoming more Ukrainians to the Valley, and we want to thank the South Vancouver Island District’s Women’s Institute and their partners for offering this opportunity to new members of our community,” she said.

“There has been such an outpouring of support for Ukrainians and we are so grateful to everyone who has donated time, cell phones, or funding for our new neighbours.”

The CIS is also seeking volunteer drivers to help Ukrainians attend the classes.

If you are interested in volunteering your time, please contact 250-748-3112 or email office@cis-iwc.org by July 25 at 4 p.m.

Mileage will be reimbursed thanks to the South Vancouver Island District Women’s Institute.

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