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Photo Credit: Stadt Frankfurt am Main/Ben Kilb

A first aid centre with emergency accommodation for refugees from Ukraine is being built at Messe Frankfurt from the end of this week. In Hall 1 on the Frankfurt exhibition grounds, there will be the first port of call where everything necessary will be provided until the people can be placed in longer-term accommodation throughout Hesse. A contract to this effect was concluded with the city at short notice and without red tape.

More and more people seeking protection from Ukraine are currently arriving in Frankfurt by train, bus, plane or private car. The city is the central contact point for refugees in Hesse. For days, those responsible have been preparing intensively to prevent a situation like the one in Berlin. A corresponding operational order from the state to the city’s lower disaster control authority to create a first aid centre was issued on Wednesday.

The emergency shelter will initially be set up in Hall 1.1 and can also be extended to the second level, Hall 1.2 if required. The shelter is run by the German Red Cross (DRK) and the Arbeiter-Samariter-Bund (ASB). Messe Frankfurt is responsible for the construction and other services within the accommodation.

“We have quickly and unbureaucratically set up emergency accommodation on our exhibition grounds in Hall 1, as immediate assistance is required,” says Uwe Behm, the Member of the Board of Management of Messe Frankfurt responsible for the exhibition grounds. “This has become the first point of contact or intermediate station to provide people who have had to flee Ukraine with everything they need until they can be placed in longer-term accommodation.”

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Photo Credit: Messe Frankfurt GmbH / Sutera

“Frankfurt is a cosmopolitan city that has become a second home for many refugees in its history. Let’s show the people from Ukraine that they are welcome here.”

“The people fleeing to us from Ukraine need our help. They must be able to trust that our declarations of solidarity are not just lip service,” says Peter Feldmann, Lord Mayor of the City of Frankfurt. “That is why the first aid centre that we are setting up at short notice at our trade fair is so important. Frankfurt is a cosmopolitan city that has become a second home for many refugees in its history. Let’s show the people from Ukraine that they are welcome here.”

“I am pleased that the state has taken up my suggestion that the distribution of people in Hesse should also be managed from Frankfurt and has given us the corresponding operational order,” says Frankfurt’s head of social affairs Elke Voitl. “This saves the refugees further journeys after the exhausting flight. In our experience so far, most people arrive here traumatised, very exhausted and often hungry,” says the city councillor. “About half of those seeking protection are children and young people. For them, it is particularly important to quickly have a protected and safe place to breathe again. We want to create this here in Frankfurt with the fair near the main railway station, together with all our forces,” says Elke Voitl.

In addition to the corresponding preparations for the infrastructure on the exhibition grounds, Fairconstruction, a subsidiary of Messe Frankfurt, is helping to equip two sports halls for refugees in Frankfurt with stand construction materials.