Buxton charity launches free English lessons for Ukrainian refugees

A Buxton charity is offering English lessons for Ukrainian refugees now adjusting to a new life in the High Peak.

By Ed Dingwall
Monday, 13th June 2022, 12:27 pm

The foodbank and advice service Zink has been hosting the weekly lessons at its headquarters on Clough Street from Monday, May 30, and any Ukrainians who want to attend will be very welcome to simply turn up, with no booking required.

Zink has been working with Buxton Homes for Ukraine, Hope Valley Sanctuary and High Peak Friends of Ukraine to support refugees to settle into the area, as an extension of its employability and wellbeing services.

Chief executive Paul Bohan said: “We are supporting some refugees on our employability programmes into work and it has become clear that English lessons are vital to that. A number of qualified and experienced teachers of English as a foreign language came forward to offer to help.”

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Zink chief executive Paul Bohan.

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Classes will last between 60 and 90 minutes, and the will be different levels to suit individual ability so they are open to complete beginners and those with some knowledge. For more information, call the charity on 01298 214926.

As of Tuesday, May 17, the Government reported that 129 visas had been issued to refugees headed for the High Peak – out of 142 applications – and that 66 had already arrived. For Derbyshire as a whole, 762 visas had been issued in response to 879 applications, with 401 arrivals to date.

In total, the UK’s dedicated resettlement schemes had issued 107,400 visas to people fleeing the war in Ukraine, in response to 128,100 applications, and the Home Office has reported 20,800 arrivals so far via Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme, and 33,000 via Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme.

There is no minimum English level required for visas to be granted, and refugees arriving via the Homes for Ukraine programme will be able to live and work in the UK for up to three years, and have access to healthcare, welfare and schools – so many may want to access English as a second language classes.

For more information on what is being done to help new arrivals in Derbyshire, see https://bit.ly/38J8Zmw.

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