The Woolwich Community Health Centre has taken on the administration for donations for the refugee guest house project, and has launched a Canada Helps online charity campaign.
The donations will be used to finish furnishing the house, and cover the cost of insurance, utilities and other expenses. The campaign has already raised more than $12,000 towards its $30,000 goal.
The former Jakobstettel Country Inn was a bed and breakfast for many years. The house has sat empty for at least three years, and plans are in the works to fix it up and prepare it to welcome Ukrainian refugees.
The former director of the Woolwich Community Health Centre, Clinton Rohr, a resident of St. Jacobs, had the idea to fix up the house as a temporary place for Ukrainian refugees to land after he heard the Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy asking the world for help. He hopes the community will come together to provide the work and resources necessary to make this possible.
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The house has ten bedrooms and can hold about 15 people at a time. Community members are already coming forward to help with grounds maintenance, cleaning the inside and driving refugees among other tasks.