IOOF Seniors Homes Inc. in Barrie has temporarily donated an entire building to help Barrie’s Ukrainian community.
"All over Barrie, the folks here from different service organizations – too numerous to mention – have come together and helped us bring this all together," said Roman Plawiuk, a volunteer for Barrie’s Ukrainian community.
 The new Ukrainian Canadian Cultural Centre, officially opened Saturday, features 20 apartments expected to house roughly 50 Ukrainian refugees throughout the winter.
"It’s very hard, as you know, for any family, let alone someone who has just been totally displaced, to come here to start a new life," reminded Plawiuk.
The buildings are due for renovation in the springtime, so they were made available to the refugees until then.
"We’re trying to help them and this apartment complex here is going to help a lot of people," added Plawiuk.
The facility also features a donation centre and a cultural activity room, which will be used for education.
"For the kids that are here to be able to kind of reconnect, socialize, and make it feel kind of like home," said Plawiuk.
In Collingwood, Andy Tereshyn, is trying to raise money to help Ukrainians at home and abroad.
He’s motivated by his cousin, who has been fighting for the country since 2014.
"He was one of the first to go out to the front lines. 500 of them from his brigade went out and only 200 of them came back alive," said Tereshyn. "It hit us hard in our heart. My wife and I both have family in Ukraine and we were in downtown Collingwood one day wearing a Ukrainian ribbon and two ladies came up to us and asked what they could do to help Ukraine."
The local fire department was the first to get on board and allow them to use the station as a drop-off location for supplies and donations.
He’s also found more support at the Collingwood Farmers’ Market.
"Here in Collingwood it’s been unbelievable. The people have been so generous. They’ve donated a great deal of money and medical supplies."
Although the Farmers’ Market wraps up this weekend, Tereshyn hopes that between Thanksgiving and Christmas, Canadians can continue to find the giving spirit to help the people of Ukraine. 
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