Utah are helping 50 athletes from Ukraine affected by the Russian invasion by providing an opportunity for them to train there ©UOLF

The Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation (UOLF) is bringing approximately 50 displaced Ukrainian athletes, coaches and family members to the American state as part of its latest humanitarian initiative.

This relocation process started at the beginning of May, helping those affected by the invasion of Ukraine by Russia.

It is to particularly held winter sports athletes, with Utah having sufficient facilities for training.

"Utah has long been a home for international athletes and we feel it is our duty to step up and support Ukraine's winter sports teams," said UOLF chief executive Colin Hilton.

"We have amazing resources and a caring and hospitable community that knows that when there is a need, we do something about it. 

"Our Legacy Foundation looks forward to coordinating services for these young athletes, coaches, and family members from Ukraine."

According to a 2021 Utah WorkForce Refugee Services report, around 65,000 refugees, former refugees and their children live in Utah.

Ukrainians receiving flowers on arrival in the United States ©UOLF
Ukrainians receiving flowers on arrival in the United States ©UOLF

"Utah has a long and proud legacy of welcoming refugees to our state," said Utah Governor Spencer Cox.

"This is an incredible opportunity to support our Ukrainian friends in pursuing their goals in sport and life."

Cox also supported the arrival of Afghani refugees last year.

Outreach efforts were coordinated with Ukrainian Olympic Committee President Sergey Bubka.

A group of 10 curlers are now training at the Utah Olympic Oval and Weber County Ice Rink, residing at the University of Utah.

A group of 39 freestyle skiing athletes, coaches and family members are to arrive in June - and are to train and live at Utah Olympic Park.

After Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24 - with assistance from Belarus - the International Olympic Committee recommended the banning of athletes and officials from both countries from major competitions.