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Know Your Rights: Ukrainians in Ireland

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Deirdre Vann Bourke, Kerry Citizens Information Manager, gives an update on the supports available to Ukrainians coming to Ireland, those who have recently arrived in the country or for people who want information on how to support them.

“When Ukrainians, or people travelling from Ukraine, first arrive in Ireland they need to go to the reception centre at Dublin Airport and give their details," Deirdre said.

"This is where they will get the papers they need to show that they can stay in Ireland. The staff at the reception centre can also help them to get somewhere to stay and help with money.”

Visas

Citizens of Ukraine do not need a visa to travel to Ireland. Deirdre also clarifies that they do not need proof that they have a COVID-19 vaccine, or need to take a COVID-19 test before they arrive. If they do not have a current passport, they can use another form of identification to travel to Ireland for example; national ID card, expired passport or birth certificate. The Irish Government has asked airlines to accept these documents. Deirdre cautions that if you are travelling with family members who are not Ukrainian citizens, they may need a visa to come to Ireland.

If you are already in Ireland and you need to bring children here from Ukraine without their parents, you should contact the Department of Foreign Affairs at 01 4082000 and ask for their Ukraine Unit.

Immigration and international protection

The EU, including Ireland, is using the Temporary Protection Directive. This means that Ukrainians are allowed to work and access services and benefits without making an application for international protection (refugee status). This applies to Ukrainian citizens and their families. It also applies to people who live in Ukraine and cannot return to their country of origin.

Housing and accommodation

You can get help with somewhere to stay at the reception centre at Dublin Airport. If you are already in Ireland and you have nowhere to stay, you can email the International Protection Accommodation Service (IPAS) on ipasinbox@equality.gov.ie.

Healthcare

You can access healthcare in Ireland. You can also apply for a medical card. This allows you to access healthcare services for free and get medicines for a reduced price. Contact your local CIC for more information and help with the application.

Social welfare

You can apply for Social Welfare (financial support) when you arrive in Ireland from Ukraine. You need to get a PPS number (an Irish social security number). You can apply for a PPS number when you arrive in Dublin Airport. If, however, you are in Ireland already, you should go to your local Intreo centre or branch office. You should not apply online for your PPS number. The Irish Government has published Social Welfare information for people arriving from Ukraine under the Temporary Protection Directive. This information is also available in Ukrainian and in Russian. If you have children, you can get Child Benefit. This is paid to the parents or guardians of children aged under 16. It is also paid for children aged 16 and 17 in full-time education. You do not have to have proof that your 16 and 17-year-old children are in full-time education for the first two months after you arrive in Ireland.

Education

The Tusla Education Support Service can help you find a school for your children. You can get more information about how to enrol children by calling your local CIC.

What can I do if I want to help?

Pledging Accommodation

Deirdre advises that there are a number of ways you can help Ukrainians coming to Ireland. You can pledge accommodation on the Irish Red Cross website by registering your profile on the Register of Pledges on www.redcross.ie. Someone from the Irish Red Cross will contact you to get further details. The Irish Red Cross is working with the Irish Government to match people who have accommodation to offer, with refugees who have come to Ireland. You can pledge a spare room in your house or a completely vacant property. Pledges can be offered on a charitable basis or you can request to receive Housing Assistance Payment. Shared properties must include direct access to cooking facilities, shared or private bathrooms and private bedrooms of a reasonable size. All properties must be close to public transport and within a short commute to villages, towns or cities.
Tenancy agreements are entered into and the period requested is usually 12 to 18 months. Support from Red Cross caseworkers is provided throughout the tenancy and once the tenancy is in place the guest/tenant will be placed on the Local Authority housing list.

Other Ways to Help

If you speak Ukrainian and want to help, you can contact the International Protection Accommodation Service (IPAS) which is responsible for the provision of accommodation and related services to people in the International Protection (‘asylum’) process.
Alternatively, NASC is an organisation that works with migrants and refugees to advocate for change within Ireland’s immigration and protection systems, to ensure fairness, access to justice and the protection of human rights. Based in Paul Street in Cork, NASC offers supports and training to groups interested in a community sponsorship programme. Community Sponsorship groups befriend and help newcomer refugee families to navigate different aspects of life in Ireland to support and welcome them into their local communities.

For anyone needing information, advice or have an advocacy issue, you can call a member of the local Citizens Information team in Kerry on 0818 07 7860, they will be happy to assist and make an appointment if necessary. The offices are staffed from Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm. Alternatively you can email on tralee@citinfo.ie or log on to www.citizensinformation.ie for further information.

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International day was a recipe for success

By Michelle CreanSpicy dishes and sweet treats were part of the experience in Killarney Community College as students took time out on Monday to celebrate a variety of different cultures. […]

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By Michelle CreanSpicy dishes and sweet treats were part of the experience in Killarney Community College as students took time out on Monday to celebrate a variety of different cultures.

The Modern Foreign Languages Department organised many events throughout the week but activity that took centre stage place was MasterChef for International Culture Day.

60 students from different countries took part by cooking dishes from their native countries. The judges had their work cut out for them but they finally agreed on a deserving winner.

First place went to Greece with a classic but simple Greek salad which was unbelievably well received by all. In second place was the Polish representatives who made mouth-watering pierogi dumplings while students from Germany produced a sweet cake from their own specific region and took third place.

First Year students got the opportunity to sample the food and learn about the dishes and cultures.

Stickers were worn on students’ jumpers from European Day of Languages and allowed students to speak with other students from their country and make new friends.

“It’s important to recognise and celebrate the ever-growing variety of different cultures within our society and our school setting,” Principal Stella Loughnane said.

“These opportunities provide a great scope for our students to learn and have a better understanding of these cultures while creating a greater respect for everyone’s backgrounds. I also got to taste a few of the dishes and even managed to snag a couple of recipes, they were that good.”

BREWING UP

Meanwhile it was a feel-good morning last Thursday at the school as students and staff brewed up for the Kerry Hospice Foundation.

They enjoyed many delicious treats kindly donated by staff all for an amazing cause. The Bewley’s Big Coffee Morning in aid of Kerry Hospice raised a whopping €650, this will no doubt be put to great use in supporting people in difficult times. This charity has an extra special meaning for Killarney Community College as they have had members of staff, who in challenging times, were supported by this outstanding service.

Ms Loughnane commended the efforts of staff involved adding that it was such a worthwhile cause.

“The college was delighted to host this event to raise funds for Kerry Hospice who provide so much support to our community at times of need, it is so important to give a little back.”

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Godley fourth in National Ploughing competition

By Sean Moriarty Four years on from his last appearance at the National Ploughing Championships, Shane Godley continues to move up the ranks in his age group. The Killarney Ploughing […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Four years on from his last appearance at the National Ploughing Championships, Shane Godley continues to move up the ranks in his age group.

The Killarney Ploughing Association member last represented Kerry in the Under 21s in 2018 when he placed sixth in the two-furrow conventional class in the national competition.

Last week at the 2022 National Ploughing Championships at Rathinaska, County Laois he placed fourth in the under 28 age group for the same category.

“Weather conditions for both the ploughing days was very good but the ground was very hard,” he said.

Club mate Mike Brosnan from Gortalea, finished 20th in the ‘Vintage Mounted’ class. They were the only two members of Killarney Ploughing Association to compete at the event.

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