Christian relief organization Convoy of Hope is rushing to meet the diverse needs of a growing influx of Ukrainian refugees fleeing into Poland in the wake of Russia’s brutal invasion.
“There’s a sense of hopelessness,” Ethan Forhetz, Convoy of Hope’s national spokesperson and vice president of public engagement, told Faithwire Tuesday.
But his organization, which has set up a warehouse and distribution center in Poland, is working to restore Ukranians’ hopes by providing food, shelter, water, hygiene kits, and other resources to women, children, and families in need.
“We have been working to provide food and meals to people,” he said. “On Sunday alone, we served 9,000 hot meals to Ukrainians coming across the border.”
Convoy of Hope is among the many relief groups hoping to show actionable compassion amid a time of uncertainty and pain.
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These individuals and families are fleeing to Poland with nothing. They’ve lost their homes and belongings, and most have struggled to meet their own basic needs.
“They need the basics,” Forhetz said. “They need baby supplies, because a lot of the people are women coming over with young children.”
Forhetz said his team on the ground has observed the profound solemnness overtaking the refugees who have come over the border — an understandable sadness considering the real tragedy and apprehension.
“Our team over there has been struck just by the sadness,” he said. “It’s very quiet most of the time, and, at times, you’ll just see people turn away, and they get tears in their eyes, and they cry as they think about the situation.”
Forhetz continued, “Many are women with their children. They’ve left their husbands … they don’t know whether they’re going to see them again. They don’t know where they’re going. They don’t know what’s going to happen to the country they love.”
Forhetz also praised the “generosity, hospitality and the love the Polish people have shown” to the refugees coming into their country in droves.
For example, he cited Polish women leaving strollers at a train station so Ukrainians coming in would have something for their babies.
“The Polish people have been incredible,” he said.
The Convoy of Hope spokesman also shared a story from earlier this week about a group of women who came to the warehouse in Poland and asked if they could help. The group, it turns out, was looking to pay it forward.
“It turned out that they were Ukrainian refugees who wanted to help us, so we would be able to help more Ukrainian refugees who had come across the border,” he said. “They went from very somber and sad … to smiling at the end of the day because they were working together.”
Convoy of Hope has already helped tens of thousands of individuals fleeing Ukraine and will continue to provide aid. Please continue praying for the Ukrainians in desperate need during this difficult time.
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