Chiswick sends aid to Ukrainian refugees

Second convoy of aid sets out from Fairlawn Avenue

A second convoy of aid for Ukrainian refugees will soon be making its way to Poland from Chiswick, this time largely transporting medical supplies.

Last week eight vans and two lorries worth of donations, ranging from clothing to medicine, flashlights, clothing, nappies, blankets, sleeping bags and more were sent to Poland’s border with Ukraine, where the refugee crisis brought on by Russia’s invasion continues to escalate. According to Poland’s border guard, over one million people have crossed from Ukraine into Poland since the invasion began on 24 February.

Chiswick resident Margie Frew and Acton resident Marek Wizowski are again organising this relief effort and have put a call out for specific medicines and medical supplies. Marek’s sister, who lives a few hours away from Poland’s border with Ukraine, is a doctor and has provided Marek with extensive lists of medicines which are unavailable or in short supply through her connections. The group are now working in coordination with UNICEF.

Margie told The Chiswick Calendar on Monday supplies were still needed before the vans set off on Wednesday (9 March).

Image above: first aid kits in Margie’s kitchen

Don’t bring clothes, do bring first aid & trauma kits, crutches, bandages

Supplies that are still needed include first aid kits, trauma kits, tourniquets, gauze and spare asthma inhalers (for children or adults) and any associated breathing apparatus. Crutches are also needed, as well as plastic medical boots, slings, bandages and other support items. Empty first aid kits are useful too, as they can be filled.

Margie already has a room full of supplies waiting to be dispatched. Her kitchen has been transformed into a sorting area to fill the empty or half-filled first aid kits with missing things.

Fundraising is still ongoing, with all money going towards petrol, Euro Tunnel tickets, border crossings and the changing needs of refugees. When volunteers reached the border last week they were asked to help find ways to keep those people still queuing to get into Poland warm. They went out and bought 27 fire pits with fuel.

Financial donations are being accepted via Paypal, for those who are unable to donate anything physically. This fundraising drive is different to the one which was started last week, as the appeal quickly reached Paypal’s limit of £20,000 and was closed down.

Margie’s address is 25 Fairlawn Avenue, W4.

Chiswick School collection point

Chiswick School has made itself a collection point for humanitarian aid. You can drop supplies off there between 10am and noon Tuesday 8, Wednesday 9 and Thursday 10 March.

Ms Cassells who teaches PE at the school said:

“Students and staff wanted to do something to support the refugee situation developing due to the war in Ukraine. At Chiswick School we have a history of raising money to support refugees across the world and we will be organising more events in the future”.

The school is collecting with Morrisons supermarket who will ensure the supplies get to where they are needed. Items listed below can be dropped off at the school’s reception on Burlington Lane, opposite the gates to Chiswick House Gardens.

Sanitary products / Hygiene Products / Medication (cold and flu / paracetamol etc) / Instant food (Add hot water – not microwavable food) / First aid kits / Baby cream / Nappies / Wet Wipes / – Socks (adults and children) / Protein Bars / Cereal bars / Blankets / Sleeping bags / Power banks / Batteries / Long lasting food / Baby food / Energy snacks / Dry food (crisps / biscuits / sweets etc).

Image above: Chiswick Cheese market; photograph Jennifer Griffiths

Chiswick Cheese Market makes £1,000 donation

The Chiswick Cheese Market has made a donation of £1,000 to The Red Cross Ukraine Appeal. The market is run by a volunteer group of women, all local to Chiswick or with strong links to Chiswick.

“As a Community Interest Company we have forged links with and supported only local charities with donations and practical support, but as a group we have been shocked by the humanitarian disaster developing in Ukraine.

“Without the support of our traders, market volunteers, local businesses and, most of all, our lovely market shoppers we wouldn’t have the funds to contribute – either locally or internationally. So, thank you all.”

Image above: Chiswick Flower Market director Steve Nutt raises the Ukrainian flag

Chiswick Flower Market raises Ukrainian flag

Steve Nutt, one of the directors of the Chiswick Flower Market, is usually to be seen up a ladder putting up bunting for the market. At Sunday’s market he ran a Ukrainian flag up the flagpole and sold English daffodils in support of the Ukraine appeal, which along with donations to the collection bucket raised several hundred pounds.

One of the musicians busking at the market, HiDay, gave the money she made – £218 to the Red Cross appeal for Ukraine. She matched it with her own money, bringing the total to £436.

“My parents were European and suffered through WW2 so I just wanted to give back” she told us. “My mother never forgot how the Red Cross helped them when they were refugees and I am grateful and overwhelmed by the generosity of Chiswickians.”

Images above: HiDay, busking at Sunday’s flower market

Jazz at George IV makes a donation

Two of the musicians from Jazz at George IV on Thursday 24 March, Retro Chet will give their fee to the appeal. Special Guest Vocalist Katrina Likhtman, who is Russian, will be donating her fee and organisers The Chiswick Calendar and Live Music To Go will also give a pound from every ticket sale. (For tickets book here: Retro Chet Trio).

Images above: Geoff Varrell and Caroline Cooper of Retro Chet – photograph Robin Narayan; Steve Nutt selling English daffodils in aid of the Ukraine appeal

Bake sale

Ella Marks has also contacted us to say she is arranging a bake sale for Sunday 13 March between 11am and 4pm on Sunday 13 March inside the golf and tennis club on Dan Mason Drive, at Dukes Meadows. She is asking people to bake a cake and bring it along or buy a cake – or both! All proceeds will be donated to DEC, the Disasters Emergency Committee.

DEC appeal

The DEC is made up of 15 member charities who are experts in humanitarian aid and specialise in different areas of disaster response. They include the British Red Cross, Action Aid, Action Against Hunger, Age International, Cafod, Care International, Christian Aid, Concern worldwide, the International Rescue Committee, Islamic Relief, Oxfam, Plan International, Save the Children, Tear Fund and World Vision.

They say 18 million people are projected to become affected by the conflict and 4 million people are expected to be displaced due to the conflict in Ukraine.

  • £30 could provide essential hygiene supplies for three people for one month
  • £50 could provide blankets for four families
  • £100 could provide emergency food for two families for one month

To donate directly to the DEC Ukraine appeal go here: Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: Huge response from Chiswick for donations for Ukrainian refugees

See also: Russian TV presenter with flat in Chiswick ‘a spy’

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