Ukrainian family being brought to Lindsay

Led by team at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church and other local citizens

By Mike Puffer

The family is currently in Bucharest, Romania.

Efforts are under way to bring a Ukrainian family displaced by the war in their country to Lindsay.

Volunteer organizers are energized to have connected with a mother, her sons and their grandmother and are prepared to host the family as soon as travel arrangements can be made.

Shortly after the invasion of Ukraine by the Russian army, a group of local residents gathered to learn how it might be possible to support a displaced Ukrainian family and bring them to Lindsay. The effort is being driven by the Outreach and Missions Ministry team at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Lindsay and includes several other local citizens who want to assist.

“I just felt that I had to do something,” says Dianne Dalton, convenor of the Outreach Ministry Team at St. Andrew’s. “We feel that we are being led to help this young family find a safe haven from the horrific war in Ukraine.”

Several weeks of extensive and determined research have led to Dalton and her team connecting with the family.

The mother, Natalia, her sons (Oleg, age five and Mark, 18 months) and the boys’ grandmother, Svitlana are currently in Bucharest, Romania.

The family is originally from the city of Kharkiv in eastern Ukraine. The father is a soldier and has stayed in Kharkiv to help resist the Russian invasion. The Advocate is not sharing the family’s last name at their request, given what they have experienced in Ukraine.

Several other local people have been involved in the effort, including a Lindsay man who is Ukrainian. Through his ability to translate and with social media technology, the group was able to meet and speak virtually with the family before Easter.

“She was overwhelmed that people from Canada, who she has never met, want to help her and her family,” Dalton says. Marnie Nelles of Lindsay has offered to have the family move into her home, and the five-year-old boy is already registered to attend school.

Though there is still no known time when the family may be able to come to Canada, Dalton says it could be a quick turnaround once all paperwork and approvals are complete. The leader of a similar project in Peterborough received notice on a Wednesday that Ukrainians he supports would arrive by the Friday.

“So many people have responded to our efforts. The best thing that people can do right now is to make monetary donations to a special fund that our church has established. That will allow us to purchase whatever items the family will need, as well as help Marnie with the costs of food and other items,” Dalton says. She adds that the church team will soon reach out to invite anyone in the community interested in getting involved. 

St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church’s can accept monetary donations from the public in support of the effort. Donations will be receipted by the church for tax purposes. Donations can be made at 40 William St. N., Lindsay K9V 4A1 or e-transfer via E-transfers or cheques should be clearly marked “Ukrainian Outreach.”


  1. Catherine Haliburton says:

    Praise God! I pray for their safe arrival!

  2. C. Wilson says:

    It’s wonderful how residents here are stepping up for Ukrainians. I hope the have a safe journey.

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