Ukrainian families settling in well in Fethard

Sr Frances Crowe (Presentation Sisters’ Property Group) meeting one of the Ukrainian children in the converted playroom at Fethard's Presentation Convent.

The people of Fethard have rowed in to welcome a number of families fleeing the war in Ukraine.

Major efforts have gone into modifying the former convent in the town to house the refugees who have been arriving over the last week.

The accommodation will be run by the Fethard Day Care Centre committee.

Chairperson Liam Hayes says it was very much a community effort.

“It’s absolutely bordering on the miraculous what has happened – the whole community has come together.

“All the women’s groups pulled out all the stops.

“The whole project then within the convent – to revamp it and to make it safe and fit – that was piloted by Coolmore and their expert craftspeople. They also pulled in other local craftspeople who offered their time free of charge.

“The whole Fethard community was involved from the very start.”

The group is made up of 10 adults and 10 children – two more families are due to arrive from the war torn country in the coming days.

Liam says they are already getting involved with the local community.

“Settled in very well. Quite a few of the children are already attending the local schools and I think one or two of the pre-school kids are attending our local pre-school.

“I mean its early days yet – they only arrived to us last Wednesday but they all have keys to the front door so they can come and go as they please and they have been out at the local restaurants.

“They’re very fortunate that quite a lot of their relatives had already been working in Coolmore and Ballydoyle so they’re interacting all the time.”