Speaking at last night’s council meeting, Councillor Hamida Ali, leader of the council, said: “I know all members will have been horrified by the shocking, appalling and unjustified invasion of Ukraine – a sovereign, free and democratic nation – which began just 12 days ago.
We will all have watched on in utter despair at the sustained and unprovoked attacks which continue to be perpetrated on the innocent people of Ukraine. They have no place in a modern world and are rightly making Putin’s Russia an international pariah.
I know that we will want to say loud and clear that we stand alongside those nationally and internationally who have pledged their solidarity with President Zelensky’s government and his people. We are in awe and admiration for their courage and defiance in such unimaginable circumstances.
In London, communities have rallied to demonstrate their support, with centres inundated with donations for those affected including here in Croydon.
Across South London the Polish White Eagle Club in Balham have been coordinating a significant donations drive for people fleeing Ukraine to the Poland border. Following massive waves of donations, they have opened a warehouse here in Croydon to sort and ship donations to Poland. Details are on their Facebook page and I would encourage any residents who wish to volunteer or make a donation to contact them.
You can also donate to the Disasters and Emergency Committee (DEC) Ukraine humanitarian appeal, which is collecting to help provide food, water, shelter, healthcare and protection for those fleeing the conflict.
Once details are released the council will of course be working with community partners to assess what role Croydon can play in the Government’s Ukrainian refugee sponsorship scheme and we will also be flying the Ukrainian flag from the Town Hall in solidarity over the coming days.
Many of our residents will have family or friends in Ukraine and will be worried for their safety, and I know the thoughts of the whole council are with them at this difficult time.”