Our fund opened 2 days after the war - here are some of our early efforts when the borders in Poland and Ukraine where flooded with refugees fleeing the war zones
In the last several days, we have been able to help many families across the border. Here is one of those families that have personal family relations or someone close to us within our Slavic Community in Lancaster County, Pa. They have all been placed into temporary housing in hostels & Camps. We are working hard on lining up permanent accommodations for every family.
One such family was separated at the border with her husband (Ukraine is not allowing men 18-60 to leave the country due to mobilization orders). Their vehicle was turned around, and she and her two teenage kids continued on foot while her husband drove back. As you can imagine, with the war raging, separation from her husband was incredibly traumatic to both of them as they don’t know if they’ll ever reconnect. The border is often the scene of such dramatic tearful farewells right now. We spend quite a bit of time on the phone supporting and praying for people, besides helping them with housing.
As this family was crossing over, they connected with another family of strangers. When they found out they had arrangements, they asked if they could join them.
This is a group picture from today. After being settled and having had a hot meal in the camp's cafeteria, our hearts are touched that through our efforts, we have been able to get this group out to safety.
We want to help many more people like this, and our personal resources and current fund capacity can only go so far. We are accommodating people in Poland in two steps: temporary stay in hotels/hostels, followed by more long term (and much cheaper) stay with families or apartments. The first step is the most financially intensive, so we began to immediately work on the following housing step as soon as the first family arrived. The various government resources are also being opened up, so we don’t foresee long-term housing needing sponsorship of families at this point. Also, for families with relatives here in the US, we count on US-based relatives to pick up the cost of supporting their loved ones (which they are).
Please continue sharing, and we thank everyone for the support provided so far!