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Family stuck in Poland finally gets approved for visa, plans to come to Saskatoon

Click to play video: 'Family stuck in Poland finally gets approved for visa, plans to come to Saskatoon' Family stuck in Poland finally gets approved for visa, plans to come to Saskatoon
The family was living in Rivne, Ukraine before evacuating to Warsaw, Poland when the Russian invasion started – Apr 29, 2022

Bryce Walker, his Ukrainian girlfriend, Tanya, and her son want to make a home in Canada.

The family was living in Rivne, Ukraine before evacuating to Warsaw, Poland when the Russian invasion started.

Russia first attacked Ukraine on Feb 24, and roughly six weeks ago, Walker and his family signed up to get visas to come to Canada.

When they never heard anything back, Bryce, who is a Canadian citizen, tried to call to find out more information, but was told to wait.

Read more: Saskatoon woman raising money for family stuck in Warsaw

Upon contacting Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, Global News was provided with a statement saying, “As announced on March 17, 2022, the Canada-Ukraine authorization for emergency travel is the fastest and most efficient way for Ukrainians and their families to come to Canada.

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“The CUAET will facilitate the rapid processing of electronic visa applications within 14 days of receipt of a complete application, for standard cases.”

However, it had been well over two weeks.

They had completed all the steps, but the Canadian Embassy required Tanya’s son’s father to give consent for her son to come to Canada.

They were told they needed a written copy of the father’s consent, even though he is actively fighting in the war.

Read more: ‘It’s been life-changing’: Ukrainian refugee and host family celebrate Easter together in Calgary

Walker’s sister is doing the best she can to help, from Saskatoon.

“Every male aged 18 and up has to be fighting or helping out in the war. so like, how are you gonna get a hold of his dad, this is, this is crazy,” said Kari Belcher.

The Canadian Ukrainian Congress then told them they could upload it online, but they still need the father’s consent.

“So it’s not even a story about just my brother, it’s about all those moms, whether you’re married or not, you need that letter,” Belcher said.

This week, Walker confirmed they finally got a foil-less visa.

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The Canadian government would send those applying a letter saying if they qualify and all they need is their passport to travel to Canada.

However, people with this kind of visa can only leave from certain international airports and the over-run Warsaw airport was facing a labour dispute threatening the families way out, yet again.

Read more: N.S. woman hosting Ukrainian refugee family calls for medical fees to be dropped

Walker and his family were trying to figure out how they could get to Germany, to leave for Canada.

Kari says it got to a point where Bryce felt like he used his resources in the wrong way and would never make it to Canada.

“He’s kind of like, we could have used all that money that we’ve put forth for expensive apartments and hotels, and could have actually got a cheap apartment and be rooted where they would be for now and be more settled than moving back and forth,” Belcher said.

The labour dispute at the Warsaw airport is now resolved.

Walker is trying to sort out flight plans, for himself, his girlfriend and her son.

They were able to get in contact with Tanya’s son’s father, who was able to upload the letter of consent.

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Now his biggest worry is money for more nights in hotels and the costs to fly home.

Belcher is holding out hope to be greeting them all at the Saskatoon airport on May 10.

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