Accommodation centre for 300 Ukrainians set to open in south Dublin

State could take in up to 100,000 people fleeing Russian invasion, Government says

A Ukrainian boy, who fled the Russian invasion, pictured at the Dublin Airport reception facility last month. Photograph: Chris Maddaloni

A temporary rest facility that will cater for 300 Ukrainian refugees is to be established in Ballyogan, Dublin, in the coming weeks.

A large building owned by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council on Ballyogan Road has been selected for the facility, which will be called the Ballyogan Regional Temporary Rest Centre.

The development comes as the Government set aside a further €3 billion to cover the cost next year of sheltering war refugees from Ukraine.

A total of 22,605 refugees have arrived in the State since the invasion began, with Ministers preparing for the possibility that 100,000 might yet arrive.

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The cost of looking after refugees this year is being funded from the €2.5 billion that remains in a €4 billion coronavirus contingency fund that Government had set aside previously.

The centre in Ballyogan will accommodate up to 300 displaced Ukrainian nationals for short periods. Thereafter, they will be allocated longer-term accommodation in other areas of the State.

Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council said the existing building and surrounds will be transformed into a “safe, comfortable and appropriately designed and managed accommodation centre”.

It will be run on a 24-hour basis with a dedicated team of site managers and operatives who will be contracted to manage the facility, as well as providing catering and sanitary facilities.

Staff

Council staff and volunteers will have a daily presence on the ground to monitor operations. Provision of recreational areas both inside and outside the facility is also planned.

In addition to local authority teams, other public service organisations will attend and provide essential services on site as required, including HSE support teams and healthcare workers.

It is expected the facility will be open and operational during the week commencing April 25th.

A number of local authorities in the eastern region have also established a multi-agency community response forum. Its immediate focus is on the speed of response and “providing a comprehensive variety of services” to those arriving from Ukraine.

“This is a national humanitarian response to a war time emergency situation and the east region local authorities, civil defence, and the local community and volunteer organisations are committed to providing safe, appropriate and respectful accommodation while facilitating continuous care and embedded service provision,” the council said.

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter