On June 8, 2023, another round of humanitarian aid was purchased thanks to the SVD benefactors and friends from Poland arrived in two towns in Ukraine. The Vietnamese community in Poland and the SVD Mission Procure from Pieniezno donated the funds.
Fathers Wojciech Zolty SVD, parish priest in Verboviets and Adam Kruczynski SVD, parish priest in Struga, together with Father Piotr Kuczer, a diocesan parish priest in Kurylowiec Murowany, took to Irpin and Bucha near Kyiv 160 packages containing basic foodstuffs and chemical products.
"All the products were purchased locally. This way, we support local businesses," explains Fr. Zolty. "There was, of course, the possibility of buying everything in Poland and transporting it to Irpin and Bucha, but ultimately, we decided on a logistically cheaper solution. One must remember that prices in our country are very high, so local stores have difficulty selling Ukrainian goods. So we decided to support them as well and thus kill two birds with one stone."
The SSpS Sisters, who work in Verboviets, were very helpful in preparing and packing the products. Contact with Irpin and Bucha has been established thanks to people who, at the beginning of the war, found shelter in Verboviets and returned to their homes after the liberation of both towns. "They prepared the list of the most needy and coordinated the distribution of packages on site," says Fr. Zolty. "Without them, it would be difficult to reach those who need help. Some recipients lived in our buildings in Verboviets a few months ago."
The SVDs working in Ukraine have been helping all people in need since the beginning of the conflict with Russia. The very next day after the outbreak of war, the missionaries began to accommodate Verboviets people fleeing from the eastern parts of the country.
"In those days, we received dozens of phone calls asking if places were still available and if it would be possible to stay with us. And so on the second day of the war, our buildings filled up," recalls Fr. Zloty. "We took in 45 people at that time. According to the information from local authorities, about 3,000 refugees were staying in the area. After a couple of weeks, the rotation of these poor people began. Some stayed for a day or two, others for some weeks. Some came, others left."
On behalf of the SVDs in Ukraine and, more importantly, of the people who received help, we would like to thank all the donors and benefactors, especially the Vietnamese living in Poland and those who joined the Polish Province's "Help Ukraine" campaign. (SVD Poland website).