Last Updated: 2022/05/12
United Way British Columbia is bringing together the power of many to support displaced Ukrainians.
United Way British Columbia (UWBC) supports communities and strengthens the vital connections that make them healthy; this includes newcomers seeking safety and belonging. Through our newly integrated service, 211, we are eager to provide support for displaced Ukrainians as they navigate this challenging transition, and connect compassionate British Columbians to volunteer and donation opportunities.
Have you arrived in BC from Ukraine?
- A list of supports and resources is available below.
Looking to donate or volunteer?
- Housing - please fill out the United for Ukraine Housing Intake Form. The purpose of this form is to collect the information needed to connect you with settlement organizations that are supporting Ukrainians with available housing as they arrive to BC. A Criminal Record Check is required. It’s a simple process to complete and it's free.
- Goods and Services - please fill out the In-kind Ukraine Donation Intake Form. (United Way British Columbia (UWBC) will coordinate and direct donations according to community needs.)
- Volunteer - please sign up via UWBC iVolunteer website. (There is a specific need for volunteers fluent in Ukrainian.)
- Financial Donations - Show your local love. Donate to UWBC's United for Ukraine fund. Learn more and donate here.
Check back regularly for updates. We will be adding new information as it becomes available.
Resources for Ukrainians arriving in British Columbia
Vancouver International Airport (YVR) Reception
In partnership with the Government of Canada, the Canadian Red Cross is providing reception services for people displaced from Ukraine as they arrive at select airports in Canada. Services may include reception, registration, translation services, and information and referral to additional supports.
Canadian Red Cross also offers downloadable Welcome Packages in English, Ukrainian and Russian.
Unvaccinated and Partially Vaccinated Ukrainians
Federal information and guidance on vaccinations for Ukrainian nationals and family members is available here.
A Government of British Columbia website that provides information for Ukrainians who are moving to BC, as well as for British Columbians who want to volunteer or donate to show their support. Visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/tourism-immigration/ukraine/welcome (Українська | Русский)
A Government of British Columbia website that provides general settlement information, including a guide for newcomers’ First Few Days in BC and how to Find a Place to Live. Visit: https://www.welcomebc.ca/Start-Your-Life-in-B-C. A Newcomers’ Guide is available in Ukrainian.
Government of British Columbia Contact Centre that offers assistance to Ukrainians arriving in BC with accessing provincial government services such as employment, health care, housing and education. Dial 1-800-663-7867, Mon-Fri 7:30 am to 5 pm. Translation is available in Ukrainian, Russian, and 140 other languages.
The Canadian Government is making all federally funded settlement services available to all Ukrainian temporary residents and their dependents in Canada. Ukrainian temporary residents are also eligible for provincially funded settlement services.
Language classes are available at no cost to permanent residents and Ukrainians arriving under the Canada-Ukraine authorization for emergency travel (CUAET).
Ukrainian Displaced Person Assistance Program (UDAP)
Vancouver, BC - A community-based volunteer initiative designed to help displaced Ukrainians coming to Vancouver. To apply, displaced Ukrainians can fill out the online form. A program representative will contact applicants to discuss their case and provide assistance. Primarily serves women with children, single women, families with under school-age children, and youth, high school, and college students, but will consider other Ukrainians if resources are available.
Holy Eucharist Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral
New Westminster, BC - Offers a team of professionals to help with safe and successful resettlement for Ukrainians including help with visa application forms, plane tickets and insurance, temporary free accommodation, paperwork after arrival, mental health issues, community settlement, and job search. Online form to request help. (Українська)
Help Ukraine Vancouver Island
Vancouver Island, BC - A volunteer-run website that provides information for Ukrainians and Canadians. Offers information on resources, housing and finding a host, events, local organizations, news, job postings, free household items, and more. For Canadians, it offers information on how to donate, volunteer, or host Ukrainians. Visit: https://ukrainehelpvi.ca/
Settlement services are available to assist with finding housing.
Ukrainian Canadian Congress
An organization that brings together national, provincial and local Ukrainian Canadian organizations under one umbrella. They may be able to connect Ukrainians with short-term transitional housing offered by members of the community. Visit: https://www.ucc.ca/
Ukrainian nationals can apply for an open work permit. An open work permit allows you to work for almost any employer in Canada. An open work permit is valid for up to 3 years.
Jobs for Ukraine
Government of Canada has set up a Job Bank page dedicated to Ukrainians coming to Canada that includes information for job seekers as well as hiring employers.
Is an independent online community platform connecting people in Vancouver with resources to assist Ukrainians in their time of need. Employers can register to offer employment in Metro Vancouver.
Help Ukraine Vancouver Island
Immigrant Employment Council of BC
Talent Beyond Boundaries
A charity connecting refugees with jobs internationally. Anyone displaced by the Ukrainian crisis can register on TBB's Talent Catalog to be considered for international employment and skilled visa opportunities.
Special Response Fund for Trainees (Ukraine)
The Government of Canada is providing funding to graduate students and researchers to continue their research in Canada. Recipients must have already received funding from a Canadian research agency.
Medical Services Plan (MSP)
Displaced Ukrainians arriving in BC with visas issued under the federal Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel (CUAET) will now have access to date-of-arrival Medical Services Plan (MSP) coverage. Government is encouraging those arriving in British Columbia from Ukraine under the CUAET to submit their application for MSP enrolment as soon as they arrive in British Columbia at: www.gov.bc.ca/MSP/applyforhealthcare or by calling 1-800-663-7100 for more information.
BC PharmaCare helps pay for eligible drugs, medical devices and supplies, and pharmacy services through 12 drug plans. Ukrainians arriving under the CUAET who have completed their enrolment in MSP and have a Social Insurance Number are eligible to apply for Fair PharmaCare. The Fair PharmaCare plan is based on income. BC Phamacare will also cover costs of urgently needed drugs for CUAET arrivals not yet enrolled in MSP. More information is available here.
Newcomers must have a medical exam within 90 days of arriving in Canada. Find an approved physician for a medical exam.
Clinics, Hospitals, and Pharmacies
Health services such as walk-in clinics, hospitals, pharmacies, and more are available across BC.
The BC Government provides free COVID-19 vaccines. Learn how to get vaccinated.
Mental health resources are available to anyone residing in BC.
Vancouver Island Counselling Centre for Immigrants and Refugees (VICCIR)
Offers counselling services with interpretation support. VICCIR offers a specialist team of therapists, interpreters, social services worker, and volunteers to meet the mental health needs of refugees and persons who have immigrated to Canada. Accepts referrals from settlement agencies, sponsorship groups, schools, medical professionals, ministries, and individuals.
Vancouver Association for Survivors of Torture (VAST)
Provides trauma-focused psychological counselling to refugees and other newcomers who have experienced trauma as a result of torture, political violence, or other traumatic event.
Immigration is the responsibility of the federal government of Canada. You must follow federal guidance to enter Canada.
Canada-Ukraine authorization for emergency travel (CUAET)
The Government of Canada has created the Canada-Ukraine authorization for emergency travel (CUAET) to help Ukrainians and their family members come to Canada as quickly as possible and to provide them with the ability to work and study while in Canada. Apply online for the Canada-Ukraine Emergency Authorization for Travel. When applying for this visa, one should also request a work permit. For immigration and visa questions, dial 1-613-321-4243.
Additional Government of Canada Information:
- Canada’s response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine
- Immigration measures for people affected by the Russian invasion of Ukraine
- Extend your stay or restore your status in Canada
- Assistance for Canadians in Ukraine
- Additional Immigration Support for Those Affected by the Situation in Ukraine
The Canadian Bar Association Immigration Law Section provides legal services, without charge, to individuals affected by the crisis in Ukraine. These services include legal consultations and advice for those seeking to take advantage of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s facilitative initiatives and programs to bring eligible Ukrainian nationals to Canada. There is an online form to Request Pro Bono Assistance - Ukraine.
Different types of child care exist in BC. Learn how to access child care in BC.
Children aged 5 to 18 should be registered in a local school upon arrival. Find your local school district and contact information on this map. Information about BC’s kindergarten to grade 12 curriculum is available here.
Post Secondary Education
Individuals require a study permit prior to studying in Canada at the post-secondary level. Ukrainians arriving through CUAET are eligible for domestic tuition rates. Learn how to apply for a study permit or extend a study permit. Find post-secondary institutions and programs here. Those who don’t have access to education documents like diplomas or academic transcripts can contact the World Education Services Gateway Program.
Graduate students and researchers may be eligible for funding to continue their research in Canada. Recipients must have already received funding from a Canadian research agency.
New arrivals from Ukraine can use their Ukraine driver’s licence for up to 90 days. ICBC offers help with driver licensing at their driver licensing offices across BC. Learn how to get a driver’s license.
BC Ferries is offering free ferry travel to support Ukrainians arriving at their final destination in BC. Translators and host volunteers providing travel assistance to Ukrainians are also eligible for free ferry travel. Travelers should call 1-888-223-3779, extension 6, and will be asked to provide their route, time, and passenger information. More information is available here.