A rainy Monday morning was made better by a donation of brand-new mattresses at the Ukrainian Settlement Task Force Drop-off building in Steinbach.
The co-chair of the non-profit organization, which was specially created to help displaced Ukrainian families in southeast Manitoba, says he is very grateful.
Chris Goertzen gives us an update, "Well, you know, there's been a lot of new families coming to Steinbach and the region. We've had over 50 families come and we've had some great partners that have really stepped up to make it a little bit easier for people to settle from Ukraine."
He continues, "We've had a great partnership with many different organizations in Steinbach and Southland Church has been one of those. They have a distribution centre where they've been collecting used furniture, clothing and many other things that people need to set up a home. And so, one of the things that have been missing, has been mattresses. Good-used mattresses aren't something that often gets donated and we saw that gap filled today."
Goertzen says, Mark Budala from Solomon's Furniture delivered 6 brand new, single mattresses Monday morning. "Mark has been a great partner in this and we've been able to work together with him, along with other people who have donated, to come up with many mattresses for the Ukrainian folks who are settling here in Steinbach and in the region."
Goertzen says this isn't the first delivery from Solomon's, "It's been happening over the last few days already and it's been really exciting to see how people, how businesses, how organizations are stepping up to make life a little bit easier for people in a difficult situation."
He invites any company in the southeast to drop off donations. "Certainly businesses are welcome to drop things off if they see that they have items available to them and if they can be used by others, bring them by. It's great that everyone, it seems, is really chipping in and helping make life a little bit better for Ukrainian families choosing to make their home here in Steinbach and area."
Goertzen and several of the volunteers at the Distribution Centre noted that about 20 or so of the families currently in Steinbach have already used the Centre. One volunteer even mentioned that they have been able to completely set up a home for a new family. Before the family had even arrived. In some incidents Goertzen notes, that volunteers had even put cutlery in the kitchen drawers, made the beds and filled the cupboards. The family was humbled when they were welcomed 'home'.
Goertzen is grateful for all the volunteers and the many donations already received.
The Southland Church Distribution Centre Donation Drop-Off doors are open 24/7. Volunteers ask that, if possible, those dropping off donations to put the items inside the Drop-off room.
The September Ukrainian Settlement Task Force Delivery Drop-off evenings are on Tuesday, September 6 and September 20, at the Distribution Centre on the Southland Church parking lot from 5pm to 8pm. Volunteers will be on-hand to help unload larger items.
Items still needed are:
- Beds/ mattresses/ cribs/ bassinets
- Sofas/ loveseats
- Coffee tables/ end tables
- Dining tables and chairs
- Dish sets
- Cutlery sets
- Kitchen utensils (serving spoons, spatulas, whisks, egg flippers, manual can openers, etc.)
- Mixing bowls
- Cookware (pots and pans/ casserole dishes)
- Baking sheets
- Bedding (sheets, blankets, quilts, pillowcases, etc. No pillows please)
- Kitchen/ bath linens (tea/ hand/ bath towels, dishcloths)
- Clothing for men, women and children of all ages
- Coats and Jackets (all seasons)
- Shoes and boots
Fellow co-chair Denis Vassart said in an earlier interview that they will not accept any items that are ripped, stained, broken or worn out. Nor electrical items of any sort.