The city of Fethard will roll out the red carpet for refugees from Ukraine.
An incredible community response accelerated an initiative to welcome 50 refugees into the Presentation Convent building.
The building is being renovated and the first refugees are due to arrive on Friday.
The accommodation has been inspected and approved by the Irish Red Cross.
The center will be managed by the Fethard Daycare Committee.
“There is huge support for Ukraine in Fethard and we were delighted to be able to step in,” said the committee’s Liam Hayes.
“Local Ukrainian woman Alla hosted a very successful coffee morning at her cafe in Fethard and people were incredibly generous to the cause at a convent mass. A lot of work has been done to prepare the building. We will be happy to welcome the refugees on Friday and help them settle,” he said.
Liam Hayes explained that the committee agreed to the terms of purchase of the building from the Sisters of the Presentation, who he said had been extremely generous in all their dealings with the committee.
The committee will lease the convent building for six months initially to allow them to house the refugees and will finalize the deal for the property in the coming months.
“The work done by local community members and local contractors to make the convent fit for purpose in such a short time is a testament to the caring and humanitarian nature of the people of Fethard,” said Senator Garret Ahearn.
“It will be the first such building in the country to accommodate Ukrainian refugees. I will continue to work with Minister Roderic O’Gorman and his ministry to ensure that all the supports families need are provided,” added Senator Ahearn.