The Ukrainian Canadian Congress - Manitoba Provincial Council sets up a homemade sunflower wall at the Winnipeg Richardson International Airport to welcome Ukrainian refugees.

Friday morning the UCC took to social media to share pictures of the wall in recognition of the war and devastation that is happening in Ukraine.

"We would like to introduce the sunflower wall that is now set up at the Winnipeg Richardson International Airport to help welcome Ukrainian refugees arriving in Manitoba," says the UCC on Facebook.

The creation of the wall was suggested because the UCC event organizing committee wanted to find a way to commemorate all victims and soldiers that have fallen because of the war. 

Mariana Sklepowich, a member of the event organizing committee, spoke more on the meaning of the sunflower wall in an interview with CHVN Radio.

"So, a number of us who've been involved in the community, in the Ukrainian community in particular, had this idea to organize an event where we honored fallen victims and fallen heroes through sunflowers. It is the national flower of Ukraine and it carries a lot of symbolism of hope, and hope for the future and brightness," says Sklepowich.

On April 25 the UCC held a Sunflowers for Ukraine event at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, where they received an overwhelming amount of sunflowers made from a variety of materials.

At the Sunflowers for Ukraine event, people were encouraged to leave behind messages for the refugees on tags that are hung up on the back of the sunflower wall at the airport.

"Participants also had a chance to sign a tag which we kept and on the back panel of this wall is where we put up these different note cards, so arriving families can go and see the different messages that people have left for them. The sunflower wall could be used as a photo backdrop because we know we've seen a lot of new families arriving wanting to commemorate that moment of finally arriving in safety and the start of a new chapter."

The sunflower wall is set up beside the welcome desk at the airport, where volunteers from the UCC and local community greet arrivals and refugees from Ukraine.

"We're very grateful to the Winnipeg Airport authority for giving us permission to put this wall up on their space.We're extremely touched by the outpouring of love and support from the community in Manitoba and in Winnipeg"

The UCC hopes to keep the sunflower wall up for display at the airport throughout the summer as more refugees make their way to Winnipeg.