DENVER — Coloradans with ties to Ukraine have been devastated as they see images of their home country being destroyed through war, and many have been inspired to step up and help.
The nonprofit Ukrainians of Colorado announced it is raising money to send medical supplies to war-torn parts of the country, with a goal of raising $100,000.
For Andrew Lenec, a new volunteer with the organization, it’s a cause that is deeply personal. In the videos of bomb-blasted buildings, he sees the streets he walked as a member of the peace corps deployed to Ukraine. In the faces of the refugees fleeing, he sees his parents who fled the country as political refugees in the 1950s.
“When there was an invasion, I was shocked,” Lenec said. “I mean, that first day, I was absolutely numb. I kind of had to take stock of what my emotions were.”
Lenec said the televised images of destruction pale in comparison to the true destruction shared with him through phone calls with family members and friends still in Ukraine. The phone calls have also given him insight into the supplies and support needed on the ground.
“What we are witnessing is the manifestation of evil, pure evil,” he said. “How the world responds to this—that will be the history that will be written. If Ukraine is not helped, if it is not assisted, then our history is diminished. We as a species are diminished.”
Those interested in donating to the medical supply drive can learn more on the Ukrainians of Colorado website. The nonprofit has partnered with Project Cure to handle the logistics of shipping the equipment overseas.
“I will tell you, [Ukrainians] are very very grateful for the moral support,” Lenec shared. “It means a lot to them—it really does—to know that the whole world is watching and that everybody is coming together. Literally, almost the entire world is supporting Ukraine.”