Leicester collection appeal sets off for Ukraine with hundreds of items donated

By Ben Stevens

GOOD WILL: The team pack a van full of supplies for refugees

A collection appeal in South Wigston concluded on Saturday with hundreds of items being donated in aid of people fleeing Ukraine.

Around 100 boxes of essential items were donated to the appeal organised by Natasha Yearby in just over two weeks, with dozens of boxes of toys, shoes and clothes also given to the collection.

The items were donated to the Polish Club in Loughborough on Saturday and will begin their journey to near the Polish-Ukrainian border today(WED,MARCH23).

Natasha said: “We have just been completely overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity of everyone who has given whatever they can for the appeal.

“This was just a little idea we had to help those desperately poor people fleeing the invasion and it really grew beyond anything we could ever have imagined.

“Initially we thought we might only fill a small car with donations but instead we filled up an entire van so we are just really grateful and happy to have been able to do our bit to help.”

Natasha had previously called for people to donate any physical items that they could as opposed to a financial contribution as she believed this way a more immediate and substantial difference can be made for refugees.

As of last Sunday, it was estimated by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) that more than 3.5 million people had fled Ukraine since the invasion began on February 24, with the majority going to Poland.

Natasha hopes, however, that some of the items collected will go to people still in Ukraine.

She said: “We know there are a lot of people who can’t or don’t want to leave Ukraine so we are going to try our best and get some of these items into the country if we can.”

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