Community members organize supply drive to support Ukrainians


Photo by Roger Brown from Pexels

The North Salem Volunteer Ambulance Corps (NSVAC) and Chris Evers of Animal Embassy have teamed up to organize a supply drive for families and soldiers in Ukraine. Items collected will be used to create first aid kits for families and trauma kits for soldiers on the front lines.

Maria Hlushko, a member of the NSVAC, has a family connection to Yonkers’ Ukrainian community. She recently learned through a friend involved with the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA) that medical kits are an urgent need right now.

Meanwhile, Evers had been in contact with the Ukrainian Catholic Diocese of Stamford about a “Toothbrushes for Tots” program to provide toothbrushes and toothpaste to children who had been displaced by the war. Church leaders expressed gratitude for the support, though they added that additional first aid supplies were needed.

Evers, along with Hlushko, North Salem Emergency Management Coordinator Kurt Guldan and other NSVAC members, decided to team up to collect donations here in North Salem, and worked together to come up with a list of supplies to meet the need.

Among the requested supplies are bandages and dressings, gauze, antibiotic ointment, tourniquets, pen lights, glucose packets, surgical masks, burn sheets and other items necessary for first aid or trauma response.

Hlushko said that in less than 24 hours, several North Salem community organizations had already responded to the call for donations, including the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Lions Club, police department, fire department, EMS, and the Democratic and Republican committees.

Supplies can be dropped off through Wednesday, March 16 at the Ruth Keeler Memorial Library and at the NSVAC building at 14 Daniel Road. Collected items will be delivered to the Ukrainian communities in Yonkers and Stamford and then shipped abroad.

“My hope is to have everything complete and delivered to the two Ukrainian communities by the end of next week,” Hlushko said.

“Give what you can give and then motivate as many others to do the same at any level, even if it be at the toothbrush and toothpaste level,” Evers said. “I teach my students all the time ‘if we all do a little and some of us do more it is going to make a difference.’”

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