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Ukrainians in Manitoba reflect on 100 days of war

A Ukrainian serviceman patrols a village near the frontline in the Donetsk oblast region, eastern Ukraine, Thursday, June 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue).

It’s been 100 days since the first Russian bomb dropped in Ukraine, and those who have fled to Manitoba are reflecting on the grim milestone.

spent 18 days in a bunker in Kyiv before fleeing to Europe en route to Winnipeg.

Read more: The first 100 days of war through the eyes of a Ukrainian village

She says being on Canadian soil is a blessing, but it’s been an emotional transition as she recalls the pain of the war back home.

“My days are filled with sunshine and joy .. .but when I talk about it hurts,” she said.

Yaryna Chepiha. Global News

Chepiha says the support she’s received so far in Winnipeg is indescribable.

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“I was so surprised because (the) very kind people who I met … helped me so much with my things.”

Chepiha is one of almost a thousand Ukrainians who have arrived in Manitoba, and the Ukrainian Canadian Congress has has played a major role in helping them get settled in the province.

“I can’t believe its been that long,” said UCC President Joanne Lewandosky. “It’s gone by quickly, however, there’s been some potholes.”

Click to play video: 'Deputy PM Freeland greets 1st flight of Ukrainian refugees in Winnipeg' Deputy PM Freeland greets 1st flight of Ukrainian refugees in Winnipeg
Deputy PM Freeland greets 1st flight of Ukrainian refugees in Winnipeg – May 23, 2022

Lewandosky says it been a bumpy road dealing with housing logistics but the issues are smoothing out now that financial assistance is available through Ottawa.

The federal government announced financial help for Ukrainian refugees by way of a one time payment of $3,000 for each adult and $1,500 for each child.

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Read more: Ukrainians who fled to Canada will receive financial help from feds in coming days

According to Lewandosky, that kind of money is a life changer.

“They will be able to put a deposit on an apartment, they will be able to have some breathing room, and they will be able to move out of their hotel,” she said.

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