BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — This week marks five months since Russia invaded Ukraine. Since then, millions of Ukrainians have been displaced.

Many are now seeking refuge in Western New York. Community leaders estimate 200 Ukrainian refugees are now living in the Buffalo area, and they’re expecting hundreds more in the coming months.

“I can say personally, my mother sponsored part of our extended family – a woman and her three children,” said Yuri Hreshchyshyn. “There are many stories like that, and they all need some level of assistance.”

In April, the Biden administration announced 100,000 Ukrainians would come to the U.S. through an expedited program called Uniting for Ukraine. Through this, sponsors take on the housing and financial responsibility of those fleeing the war-torn country.

Buffalo is one of six cities chosen to be part of a collaboration between Jewish Federations of North America, The Shapiro Foundation and Jewish Family Services of WNY. This program will help displaced Ukrainians when they arrive in the area.

“Buffalo is known as a welcoming community,” said CEO of Jewish Family Services of WNY Molly Carr. “We saw last year with the Afghan crisis that our community is willing to step up, and wants to be here to support arriving refugees from around the world.”

Now, through the federal program or through sponsorship groups, people can help refugees financially.

“Some are coming alone with absolutely nothing. Some have sponsors already,” Hreshchyshyn said. “It’s easier to still have the professional assistance to be able to navigate through the system.”

If you are interested in helping, you can learn more information through the Jewish Family Services of WNY website.

Marlee Tuskes is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here and follow her on Twitter.