Your gifts are comforting families and children at temporary shelters in Ukraine. Here, our staff member prepares to deliver toys and games to children.

Your generosity is caring for families in Ukraine

  • Niki Clark
  • Jun 7, 2022

The room full of small children erupt into giggles and cheers as a woman begins distributing toys. The children, along with their families, come from places throughout Ukraine, having fled when the violence encroached too closely to their homes. Many came with nothing, so especially for the children, a toy feels like a very big something.  

Your love reached this mother and son at a sanatorium in Ukraine.

A home for Ukrainian families fleeing war

A man holds his young baby close, repeatedly kissing her rosy cheeks as she laughs. Because of her, his family fled Odessa as soon as the bombs started. “We decided not to leave for Poland or Germany but to the west of Ukraine. We’ve been here a month.”

By here, he means a sanatorium, one of the six across Ukraine being supported by your generosity and run by the Federation of Trade Unions of Ukraine (FPU).  

The sanatoriums of Eastern European have an interesting and storied history. In the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century, factory workers routinely visited these medical institutions/health spa for two weeks of government-prescribed rest and relaxation. After participating in doctor-directed itineraries ranging from thermal spas and massage to electrotherapy and calisthenics, workers would then return to their jobs renewed and reinvigorated. Their heyday has long passed, but you can still find sanatoriums scattered across the continent. While some continue to operate as health resorts, many others have become de facto refugee shelters. With their dining rooms and hostel-like layouts, they are ideal for housing families who have left everything behind.  

More than six million Ukrainians have left their country since the war began in late February, but millions more have stayed, fleeing to safer places within Ukraine far from their homes.  

A bedroom where those fleeing violence in Ukraine can stay.

This room in one of the 6 sanatoriums supported in partnership with the Federation of Trade Unions of Ukraine will provide a safe and comforting respite for those Ukrainians fleeing from violence.

Your gifts are comforting families with shelter, essential items and medical supplies

Your generosity is embracing families in Ukraine with the critical support they need right now. Specifically for those families staying at the sanatoriums, you are providing:  

  • Housing for more than 15,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) forced to flee heavy fighting in the eastern and southern parts of the country with no other means of support. 
  • Food, supplies and equipment. Many Ukrainians arrive at the sanatoriums with only the clothing on their backs. Your gifts are providing essentials including food, folding beds, pillows, heaters, laundry detergent, toilet paper and personal hygiene items. And since kids do not stop being kids during war, there are toys to bring smiles and the gift of play.  
  • Quilts and Kits. Because of your generosity, we are channeling quilts and kits to these facilities, bringing some much-needed comfort to families.  

You are also providing critically needed supplies and equipment to two hospitals in Ukraine. This includes medical supplies such as stethoscopes, thermometers, and needles, trauma supplies such as surgical and wound care kits, defibrillators and stretchers as well as medicines like insulin and morphine to help with chronic illnesses.  

With your continued support, we will continue to expand our response to reach more Ukrainians. 

Thank you for caring for our Ukrainian neighbors. Your love and support are making our entire response possible. With your continued support, we will expand our response to reach more Ukrainians. 

Give now to reach Ukrainians and neighbors in need around the world. 

We are grateful for the thousands of Lutherans across the United States whose care and generosity have made it possible for us to respond immediately. Because of you, our teams on the ground are meeting these immediate needs while also planning longer-term responses as families rebuild their lives around the world. But we can’t do it without you.


Niki Clark, Jun 7, 2022 email