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UkraineOn Friday 24 February the Ukrainian flag has been raised at County Hall in Dorchester to mark the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Councillors and council employees also joined the national one-minute silence on the day at 11am.

More than 900 Ukrainians have settled across Dorset since Vladimir Putin’s forces began the war, forcing thousands to flee their homeland.

Councillor Laura Beddow, Dorset Council’s Portfolio Holder for Culture, Communities and Customer Services, said: ‘As we mark the anniversary of this conflict, we continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Ukraine, and reaffirm our commitment to those fleeing the conflict in their homeland.

‘Dorset has a proud history of welcoming new arrivals at times of crisis, offering homes and support to people escaping the horrors of war.

The Homes for Ukraine scheme, which is being administered by Dorset Council alongside other organisations, has seen over 408 local residents giving accommodation to families from the war-torn country and we want to add our sincere thanks and tribute to communities who have opened their hearts and homes.

‘We also want to thank local voluntary and community organisations we work with to ensure refugees arriving from Ukraine are welcomed and receive the support they need.

‘We will raise the Ukrainian flag to send a clear message of support, especially to those Ukrainians who have chosen to make our county their home in the past year.’

As the war continues, more Ukrainians need a place of safety and the Council says it is seeking new hosts in Dorset to help those overseas as well as Ukrainians already in the area who need to move on from their initial sponsorship arrangement.

For more information email:  ukraineresponse@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk

The Dorset Together Ukraine network includes Dorset Council, NHS, Public Health Dorset, Department of Work and Pensions (DWP), the emergency services, faith groups, Skills and Learning Dorset, Volunteer Centre Dorset, Dorset Race Equality Council, Help and Kindness, Citizens Advice and other local groups.

Local groups across Dorset will be holding events in the community to mark the anniversary event. They also provide a wide range of support and activities for hosts and guests in many local towns and villages. To find a local group in your area please see: https://www.helpandkindness.co.uk/support-for-ukraine

The UK Government has announced a national one-minute silence on Friday 24 February at 11am, marking a year since Russia’s barbaric invasion of Ukraine

This national moment of reflection will offer the UK public the chance to pay tribute to the courage of the Ukrainian people and demonstrate the UK’s unwavering solidarity with the country.

For further details: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/national-moment-of-silence-to-mark-one-year-of-russian-invasion-of-ukraine

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