Frosia Aksenova, 96, was found malnourished and with multiple broken bones in a basement. Abandoned by family, she was brought to a Lutheran World Relief-supported sanatorium where she is provided with food, shelter and health care.

[Ukraine report] Your compassion follows your neighbors into a third year of war

  • Emily Esworthy
  • Mar 14, 2024

Two years and counting. That’s how long our neighbors in Ukraine have endured the immense hardships of war.      

When Russian troops invaded Ukraine in late February 2022, our amazing community of donors banded together to mount the largest humanitarian response in Lutheran World Relief history.

Ukrainian refugees gathering at the Polish border crossing of Medyka in March 2022.
Ukrainian refugees gathering at the Polish border crossing of Medyka in March 2022. 

A swift and enduring response to the war in Ukraine 

Your quick response first reached families who were fleeing west with whatever supplies they could carry. You provided emergency cash to more than 66,000 refugees in Poland, shelter, basic supplies and more. Emergency aid has continued, extending farther to those who had to stay behind to endure shelling, occupation and food shortages.  

As the war continues, the need for more sustainable support — such as livelihoods and food production — is gaining importance. Your compassion will continue to provide urgent aid while also helping in these longer-term ways.

As the war continues, the need for more sustainable support — such as livelihoods and food production — is gaining importance. Your compassion will continue to provide urgent aid while also helping in these longer-term ways.  

Two years and counting: A report on your impact in Ukraine to date

In 2023 alone, you reached more than 50,000 Ukrainians affected by the war.  

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Here’s a snapshot of how your outpouring of love has helped. 

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In Balakliia, Kharkiv, Ukraine Oleksii Bordunov, the onsite General Manager of the LWR mobile medical clinic, stands outside the truck where the clinic is housed while doctors see patients inside. 

Mobile medical clinic. In hard-hit communities near the front, health care has been hard to access. Because of your generosity, a mobile clinic carries doctors to the people who need them most. Located in a tractor-trailer, the mobile clinic transports a cardiologist, ophthalmologist, psychologist and OB/GYN from community to community — sharing love in the form of basic health care. 

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Shelter, supplies and trauma recovery. When your neighbors had nowhere else to go, you found a way to offer hospitality from across the world. At the height of displacement, you supported six sanatorium facilities to offer extended safe refuge and daily meals to extremely vulnerable families. You have also distributed supplies throughout the country, including folding beds, pillows, heaters, cookstoves, firewood, laundry detergent, toilet paper, toys and hygiene items. And because the trauma of war is so deep and widespread, your generosity is offering psychological care and counseling to support emotional healing.  

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Lidia Sokalenko, 63, came to an Lutheran World Relief-supported sanatorium with her husband and granddaughter Diana after a harrowing experience, narrowly escaping violence in their small town in eastern Ukraine.
Lidia Sokalenko, 63, came to a Lutheran World Relief-supported sanatorium with her husband and granddaughter Diana after a harrowing experience, narrowly escaping violence in their small town in eastern Ukraine.

Responding to a crisis within the war. Last summer, targeted missile strikes destroyed Kakhovka Dam, flooding multiple villages and forcing thousands of people from their homes. Thanks to your support, critical aid arrived quickly because our team was already in position.  

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Lutheran World Relief staff member Maryna Zuy Hayes, presents an LWR quilt to Nina Cherkashyna at her home in Lyptsi, Kharkiv Oblast, Ukraine which was previously occupied by Russian forces.
Staff member Maryna Zuy Hayes presents a LWR Quilt to Nina Cherkashyna at her home in Lyptsi, Kharkiv Oblast, Ukraine, which was previously occupied by Russian forces.

Lutheran World Relief Quilts and Kits. Our faithful quilters and kit makers have comforted thousands of people with their handmade gifts. These have been distributed far and wide, from hostels for refugees in Poland to heavily shelled villages near the Russian border.

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Agriculture support. During Russian occupation, a huge number of farmlands and livelihoods were destroyed. Thanks to your generosity, a new effort launched to restore or establish small farms in the formerly occupied Kharkiv region. This effort will help more than 7,000 families, providing concrete support and hope for the future. One intervention includes distributing borscht seeds — a mix of beet, carrot, onion, dill, cabbage and tomato seeds used to make borscht, a comforting staple in the Ukrainian diet. Work has begun and is gaining momentum.  

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Thank you for standing with your neighbors in Ukraine as they continue to endure the many hardships of war.  

 

Until your love reaches every neighbor

 

CREATED BY
Emily Esworthy, Mar 14, 2024 email

 

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