The municipalities note that the reception of Ukrainian refugees in host families begins to reach its maximum limits after two months. Host families and refugees are increasingly demanding an alternative. This is Friday at Het Nieuwsblad and De Standaard.
Pregnant Irina and her 6-year-old daughter, among others, stayed with a host family:
Exactly two months after the federal government started inviting Belgian families to take in Ukrainian refugees through its #PlekVrij project, most families who accepted are still doing so.
However, many municipalities report at the same time that the initial enthusiasm of many people is starting to change now that the reception has taken longer than they expected. The Federation of Flemish Towns and Towns (VVSG) also noted: “The massive solidarity was great, but the effect was greater than people expected.”
Both host families and Ukrainian families report difficulties.
In Turnhout – where 81 people are housed in 33 households – Ukrainian families are primarily asking if they can move, says Social Council member Kelly Verhein (Vorwett). This has already happened in five cases. “The main reason for this is the lack of privacy.”
In Vilford, “Both the host families and the Ukrainian families point out the difficulties,” says Mayor Hans Bonte (Vorwett). Communication is often difficult, because many highly educated Ukrainians speak little or no English. Some of the host families wanted to offer housing, but are now discovering that they are also participating in the administrative frenzy: looking for work, Dutch lessons, housing.”
Regina Valeeva, who receives a family herself and acts as an interpreter for reception families in the Denderleeuw region, notes that “the financial impact is often higher than expected.”
Watch also: Stories about the exploitation of Ukrainian refugees have already begun to appear in our country
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