Sheffield family slams government for delays in Homes for Ukraine scheme

A Sheffield family who have offered their home to a mother and her daughter who are fleeing Ukraine say government red tape is delaying the process.

Michael Wigley from Eckington, near Sheffield and his partner, have matched with a family from Ukraine through the website Opora, which matches sponsors and guests for the Homes for Ukraine scheme.

Mr Wigley said : “The government is a liability and has put up every obstacle to make it impossible for Ukrainians to come here easily.”

The family Mr Wigley matched with consists of a mother, a daughter, and a dog and a cat.

But they have found serious difficulty in moving forward with the process due to the documents and procedures being made ‘purposefully confusing’ by the government.

Mr Wigley said: “It is a disgrace and I am embarrassed, we are supposed to be a leader of the free world and this is all show and no substance.”

Across Sheffield, residents have offered donations and rooms in their homes.

Dianne Evans, 57, who works for her family business, an estate agents Evans Lee in Nethergreen, has played a huge role in helping bring together her community and helping those over in Ukraine.

At the weekend, Ms Evans set up a clothes donation drop in aid of Ukraine Help Emergency Appeal.

Ms Evans said that 350 bags of clothes were donated filling a small lorry.

Big Dicks Board Store on Infirmary Road donated £1,500 worth of ski wear and Birkdale School donated new, unworn school uniform.

Ms Evans said : “It makes me want to cry I feel like I’ve done a bit of something.”

“We aren’t just one person but part of a team.”

All over the UK, communities have come together wanting to give aid and open up their homes to Ukrainian families.

The government’s scheme ‘Homes for Ukraine’, is asking sponsors to accommodate refugees for at least six months.

According to the government website, ‘an incredible number of people and organisations have recorded their interest in being a sponsor.’

In the Prime Minister’s questions today, Boris Johnson, said : “About 40,00 people have already applied and 150,000 families across this country have said they want to welcome Ukrainians, which is a fantastic thing.”

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