Weʼre raising £500 to help a family of five Ukranians settle in the UK
- Bridport, Dorset
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When the war in Ukraine started we made contact with Olena, a customer who has been shopping in our online shop for 8 years. We sent a message of support and an offer of help. Any help, whatever they needed we'd try to supply it. We have been communicating more and more as time has passed, providing help, friendship and the promise of a home in the UK. You may have read her story on our Instagram. We can't physically fit 5 extra people in our home but when the Homes For Ukraine Scheme was announced we realised that was a way to help! Over the past 10 days we have been on a rollercoaster, people's generosity has been astounding, we have been offered 3 houses but they were all too rural and isolated, we've phoned countless hosts but all their offers had been snapped up...until now. On Wednesday 23rd March we found a host called Marianne who has opened her home and has rooms for all five of Olena's family. Three generations have been given a lifeline. Olena, her older sister, their parents and Olena's young son. He had a birthday just a few days ago and is now 9.
My name is Olena and I am from Ukraine. I have my own shop on ETSY. The events of February 24, 2022 forced me and my family to leave our home. Our road to safety has been a long one. At first we hid in the basement under the explosions for several days. Me with my son, sister and elderly parents were taken to Lviv to an orphanage in the church of St. John Paul II by my son's Karate teacher. We ran with the same backpacks. The essentials are a wake-up backpack, as we were taught in instructions from the government. Then Polish volunteers took us to Poland to a refugee camp. From there we moved to Germany and were waiting to find a new home in the UK. Thanks to my friend Sarah, we found a new home in the UK with Marianne. We are waiting for permission from the UK government to come. Hope to see you soon with Sarah and Marianne in the UK. During our journey, we met many kind, helpful people. My family is grateful to each of them for their help! My clients from every corner of the world wrote to me with words of support and extended their helping hand! It's so unexpected and wonderful when a person who barely knows you - Lends a helping hand! I pray to God that he would help us get to our new home and start a new life. I thank every person who helped my child get a peaceful sky over his head!
We are Olena's family sponsor and have applied for all the visas they need, and we're now waiting for news that the visas have been granted and they can travel to their new UK home.
So, how can you help? We have set up this JustGiving page to raise funds - they literally have a backpack each. Imagine trying to get your entire life into a rucksack (and be able to lift it and then carry it for miles). Imagine all the essentials you no longer have. Imagine moving across the whole of Europe and arriving in the UK and having to start all over again.
***holdall photo from the internet - just imagine squeezing your most precious and useful things all in that one bag***
As soon as the visas arrive there is a long journey from Germany to Dorset to be undertaken and then a home needs to be made. Schooling needs to get started, jobs need to be found, English needs to be learned, Olena needs to start her business again from scratch. We need money to do all these things, and every penny you can give will be given directly to Olena and will be spent by her family. (Supplies for her business will be donated by our company paper-and-string, but she needs things from other companies too, not one penny of these donations will be spent on paper-and-string products).
everyday my life is getting better and better
Olena's son said ''everyday my life is getting better and better'' when he saw the pencil case that John picked out for his birthday. It made us both cry, that such a small thing made a big difference. Just imagine how many small things your donation can do. Between us we can make all of their lives better in lots of small ways.
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Sarah Poulton started crowdfunding
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Vicki, Winfrith shop and the dove makers
May 6, 2022
Heather & Rob
Apr 11, 2022
Sending our best wishes to Olena and her family
Apr 10, 2022
Apr 6, 2022
Well done Sarah and John for your generosity,and to Marianne for housing this needy family.I hope they experience a lovely welcome in the UK and I wish them every success,and a peaceful future.
Apr 3, 2022
Best wishes for a happy future.
Mar 30, 2022
Mar 29, 2022
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Crowdfunding is a new type of fundraising where you can raise funds for your own personal cause, even if you're not a registered nonprofit.
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About the fundraiser
I'm Sarah and I run paper-and-string, an online sewing supplies shop, together with my partner John. Illustration by: https://www.instagram.com/nina_dzyvulska/ our Insta: https://www.instagram.com/paperandstringltd/ Olena's etsy : https://www.etsy.com/shop/MagicPatternShop