President Biden announced last week that the United States would take in up to 100,000 refugees fleeing the conflict in Ukraine. As it turns out, many of them could end up in California.
Refugees are likely to settle in regions with strong ties to their homeland. And California has some of the largest Ukrainian communities in the country, including in the Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Sacramento regions. (Other major Ukrainian hubs include New York, Seattle, and Chicago.)
The Sacramento area has the highest concentration of Ukrainian immigrants in the country, according to the Migration Policy Institute, with one in every 125 residents being of Ukrainian descent.
The Ukrainian community there is already mobilizing to provide food, shelter and assistance to war refugees, The Associated Press reported this week. The House of Bread church near Sacramento has helped dozens of its member families prepare to accommodate people arriving in California.
“No refugee waits for you to be ready for them,” Eduard Kislyanka, the church’s senior pastor, told the news agency.
In Auburn, near Sacramento, Paul and Rose Chorney’s home has become something of a way station for Ukrainian refugees: a couple and their three children live in one of the three bedrooms, and another family of four sleeps in a mobile home in the driveway .
“There will be a lot more Ukrainian families coming, however they can,” Chorney, a Ukrainian whose family immigrated to the United States when he was 18, told my colleague.
About 10 million Ukrainians have fled their homes since the conflict began, with about four million fleeing the country, my colleagues report. According to the United Nations, it is the largest displacement of Europeans since World War II.
Some Ukrainian tourists and students who were already in California when the war broke out were allowed by the federal government to extend their visas. Hundreds of Ukrainians seeking asylum here have already crossed into California from Mexico, sometimes dangerously.
The number of refugees is likely to continue to rise as Russia continues to send mixed signals about its goals for the war, now in its sixth week. Although the Kremlin claims it is withdrawing from the outskirts of the capital Kyiv, fighting continued in that area on Thursday and Western officials said they saw little evidence of a Russian withdrawal.
“Russia is keeping pressure on Kyiv and other cities, so we can expect additional offensive actions that will bring even more suffering,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said at a news conference.
If you want to stay up to date on Ukraine, you can follow the latest news from The New York Times here or sign up for our nightly email on the conflict.
President Biden announced Thursday that the United States would release up to 180 million barrels of oil from a strategic reserve to lower energy prices.
A ban on Russian oil has sparked a renewed push to increase fuel production in California’s oil country. The Los Angeles Times visited a corner of the San Joaquin Valley where sanctions have brought a measure of hope.
Where we are traveling
Today’s tip comes from Kevin Corcoran, who lives in Valencia:
“Death Valley has become my favorite national park, mostly because of the backcountry opportunities, the places that can only be reached on foot and not even by trail. Most of the park is still as rugged, pristine and wild as it was a thousand years ago.”
Tell us about your favorite places in California. Email your suggestions to CAtoday@nytimes.com. We will share more in future editions of the newsletter.
We recently shared your notes on why you love your corner of California.
If you’d like to send a love letter to your California city, neighborhood or region – or to the Golden State at large – please email us at CAtoday@nytimes.com. We will continue to share your messages in the newsletter.
And before you go, some good news
Talk about a unique wedding proposal.
Harsh Shah, 35, took woodworking classes to learn how to carve a noodle stamp. He then stamped a batch of corzetti, a coin-like pasta, with a personalized message.
In February 2021, he presented his girlfriend, Laura Min McDonald, with her dinner — a plate of corzetti with pesto. She realized that each piece of pasta was embossed with the words, “Laura, will you marry me?”
It was the work of “an amazing person,” McDonald told the Times. “He’s really been such a consistent and powerful presence in my life since I’ve been with him.”
Shah and McDonald were married on March 31 at Tilden Regional Park in Berkeley.
Thank you for reading. I’ll be back on Monday. Enjoy your weekend – Soumya
PS Here is today’s mini crosswordand a hint: Mentally more together (5 letters).
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/01/us/ukrainian-refugees-california.html Where Ukrainian refugees could settle in California