“Our House” continues to prove that Belarusians are different from Lukashenko and do not consider the whole world, except for Russia, their enemies. The previous week in “Our House” has been, as usual, full of concerns for our fellow countrymen and Ukrainians, meetings and sorting humanitarian aid. We share with you our results and victories.
Our help to Ukraine
On Monday, April 4, we sent a truck with 10 tons of humanitarian aid from the “Pobach” warehouse in Warsaw (ICCI “Our House” and the DAR Initiative) to Ukraine. Our help has already reached its destination. Thanks have come from volunteers in Zhytomyr, Dnipro, Kryvyi Rih, Luhansk, Sumy, Lutsk and Chernivtsi. The International Centre for Support of Ukraine wrote to us in gratitude: “Thank you for the humanitarian aid of the volunteer centre “Our House” and our friends and partners from Warsaw, you are our great support. We have already delivered humanitarian aid to the hot spots in Kharkiv and Kramatorsk. Children’s clothes were distributed among orphanages in Dnipro, where we also brought children who had lost their parents. Also, resettlement homes were organized in Dnipro and assistance was delivered there. Everything was handed over to those in need”.
On April 5, another international company, Auchan, made the right choice and partially withdrew from the Russian market. Under the onslaught of appeals from thousands of employees, dozens of letters, and hundreds of thousands of comments on the internet, the head office decided to curtail investments and stop deliveries to Russia. On April 6, the Polish branch of Auchan brought more than 1700 kg of products to the warehouse of POBACH.WARSAW. We are pleased that we have been able to involve Auchan in cooperation and assistance to Ukraine and look forward to fruitful cooperation.
Ukrainian refugees often tell us about the shortage of drinking water in various cities. The occupiers have damaged communications. Deliveries to shops are irregular due to shelling and mined roads. On April 7, the POBACH.WARSAW warehouse received 22 tonnes of UPAS medicinal mineral water. The car with water has already left for Ukraine the next day. We’re grateful for the support of our friends from Lithuania – now, part of the people in Ukraine will be able to prepare food and stop being thirsty. In addition to that, on April 7, we received a new donation from the Biedronka supermarket chain. And another 1000 kilos of food came from France.
The flow of refugees has not stopped – mainly mothers with small children. Every day, around a hundred people come to our warehouses for help. And, of course, we are not forgetting the political Belarusians – those who strived to prevent the war in Ukraine, trying to overthrow Lukashenko’s regime, those who suffered in prison because of the dictator. To the community of Belarusians with disabilities in Poland, we donated medication, walkers for the disabled, nappies and stilts. And we also consider it our duty to support the fighters of the Kastus Kalinouski Battalion, who are now defending Ukraine as part of the AFU. We have donated 50kg of food from our warehouse in Warsaw.
The past week was full of meetings at various levels. On April, 5, Dzmitry Shchygelsky, a well-known psychiatrist and political representative of the “Supratsiu” movement, visited the POBACH.WARSAW warehouse. We had a lot to talk about: Belarusians and problems both in the country and abroad. The meeting was not quite political but cosy and full of positive emotions. We hope that it is not our last dialogue with Dzmitry Shchygelski.
On April 7, the warehouse in Warsaw welcomed guests again. The head of “Our House”, Olga Karach, came here to meet with Belarusians, Ukrainians and the head of NAU, Pavel Latushko, the famous priest Viachaslau Barok and political scientist Dzmitry Bolkunets. The meeting lasted almost three hours. Olga Karach discussed with the Belarusians what was going on in the country, the difficulties the Belarusians faced abroad and talked about the work of the warehouse and other pressing situations.
On April 8, Olga Karach visited the Polish Sejm. There was a meeting with the participation of the PACE Special Rapporteur on Belarus and our good friend Emmanuelis Zingeris. The meeting was also attended by Marshal of the Polish Senate Tomasz Grodzki, Deputy Marshal of the Polish Senate Michał Kamiński, members of the Sejm and US Congressmen. The meeting focused on the joint efforts to assist Ukraine and Belarus. We are doubly pleased that Michał Kaminski has expressed a desire to cooperate with “Our House”.
We are working every day with the hope for the soonest restoration of peace in Ukraine. Facing the terrible stories of war is very hard for everyone on our team. But we continue to help – so that thousands of people every day can have hope for the future and know that this day will not be their last.