Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Last Weeks Updates From Ukraine

In the first two paragraphs below, Polish Origins is searching for a place donations for Ukraine can be made. As soon as I get the information, I'll pass it along.  

I plan to donate at least $100.00. I challenge each and every one of you that visit my blog to match that or give what you can afford. Ukraine is getting a lot of help from all over the world, but still needs more. 

When the Russians start on the Eastern border, Gen. Alexander Dvornikov will be in charge of the Russian Army. He's known as the "Butcher of Syria". If you think it's bad now, it's only going to get worse, a lot worse for the people of Ukraine.   

Dear All,

A short note before Alex’s updates from last week. In one of the recent messages Alex wrote about medicine needs in Zhitomir hospital. Some of you asked how you can deliver the medicine to Alex, to Zhitomir. Shipping directly to Ukraine from outside of the country is now a very precarious undertaking. There is no guarantee that the goods will be delivered to the destination, even if it is part of Ukraine which is not under fighting or occupation.

This is why we have been working with Alex, Zhana from the NGO in Zhitomir and an organization in Poland to have a place where any needed goods can be delivered and transported directly to Zhitomir. When we have settled all the details, namely the address of a trusted organization, we will let you know.

This is from me. Alex is an amazing person.  

Now reports and thoughts from Alex from the last week….




Subject: This is not an update, this is a shock.

"Dear friends,

I’m sure all of you saw the pictures of the horror of this war, of the crimes of the Russian soldiers against civilians.

I was shocked to see it. I refused to believe in it. I was not prepared for the atrocity I saw.

First, I did not believe that Russia would start the war. 

I was warned so many times by my friends from overseas a couple months before the war that Russia wanted to invade the whole Ukraine. They recommended that I leave for a safe place.

But, I refused to believe that Russia would start a total invasion of Ukraine. I told them that Ukraine is too big for Russia, I told them that the biggest national minority in Russia is Ukrainians. I told them that the biggest national minority in Ukraine is Russians. I told them that 50% of the Ukrainian population is Russian speaking.

I was so wrong. I was wrong to believe that Russian people would support war.

This is a picture of a six year old girl Nastia. She is at her mother’s grave in the yard of their house in Kyiv oblast. THIS IS NOT OK

 I do not know when these wounds will be healed. 




"Dear friends,

I really appreciate your empathy and support. Though my heart is heavy with ongoing violence and disgusting pictures of war, I feel encouraged to know that I and Ukraine are not alone. People like you help me to get up in the morning and do my best to help others.

I was blessed by your donations for the work in Ukraine. As for now I received donations for the work as much as 21,842 USD! This is amazing!

I believe that only together we can win this war. Networking is very important. Many of you help me and Ukraine in different ways. I would not be able to find Motorola radios without you. It would not be possible to find external fixators for soldiers or make a deal with organizations who can donate electrosurgical equipment, needed so much for the local doctors. Some of you opened homes from the Ukrainian refugees and helped them to adopt in new places.

It is not easy and very challenging but at the same time very important!

I divide the needs in two categories; urgent and important and this is how your donations made it happen.


1.      Motorola radios for soldiers- 2,309 USD

2.      Medicaments-2,264 USD

3.      Dehydrated food for soldiers-200 pieces -2,142 USD

4.      Sleeping bags – 30 pieces -1,428 USD

5.      Help for the individuals for food and evacuation-1,220 USD

6.      Diapers- 357 USD

7.      Transportation expenses- 350 USD

8.      Bank fees 19,8 USD



Vigoda Farming Initiatives:

- Grain for animal feed and planting, ducks, piglets and diesel in store: 2,140 USD


TOTAL: 12,229.8 USD

Geography of gifts: CANADA, USA, UK, New Zealand, Poland, Germany, Romania

Today I delivered to the hospital some meds I bought in Ukraine. More will come soon from Poland!




"Dear friends,

I want to share this time about two different worlds.

My friend Casey Magee, former PCV volunteer to Zhitomir and his counterpart Zhanna, a head of the NGO in Zhitomir asked to find a driver with a van to carry building materials to the village of Jahidne, just a couple kilometers South from Chernichiv. This village was under Russian occupation for almost three weeks. The stories of people who survived this horror are just heartbreaking. This one of the stories: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-61038811

I called Denis from Vigoda rehab to check if he could complete this mission. A year ago we started a business with him “Garden Solutions” and bought an old van for this. Denis agreed to delivery rolls of water stop plastic to cover roofs. 

He told me that this was all a complete shock for him to see all this destruction.

I travelled on Saturday West. Early in the morning at 6 am right after curfew I drove to the Polish border to meet my brother and my niece who were waiting for me with the van full of boxes my family collected in Poland to be distributed in Zhitomir.

I had only a couple minutes to chat with them and then after we exchanged cars I went by van to Lviv and they back to Poland.

In two hours I picked up dr.Judah Slavkovsky, a trauma surgeon from Illinois who volunteered to work alongside his Ukrainian colleagues in the surgery wards.  Nancy Miller, an executive director of SMU put me in contact with dr. Judah almost a month ago. Judah applied for the Ukrainian Ministry of Health to work as a doctor in any hospital in Ukraine, but he got a generic answer and nothing else. 

This is not how things are done here, you need to go directly to the doctors and talk to them. This is what I did, I made a connection with Zhitomir regional hospital, they were happy to have Judah and it took me only one day to make all the arrangements.

Couple days ago, my friend Dennis Scraba from Canada told me that he had shipped a container to Lviv with food, clothing, and medicines to Lviv Theological Seminary. He mentioned to me that there are boxes of good quality medical instruments among his shipment and he welcomed me to take what we need in Zhitomir.

When we came with dr.Judah to the seminary, we were met by the president of  this seminary and he opened the storage and said: “Please, take what you need”. I’m not acquainted with this entire medical world and I was so glad that Judah was with me. Because, what we found there was a miracle. I did not expect it. I think Denis also did not expect it. We found 8 boxes of good quality external fixators! This was exactly what the head of the Zhitomir surgeon department asked for.

This is how God works! When you lose hope to find something God works behind the scene to put the right people in the right place at the right time.

Without Nancy Miller, I would not connect with Judah, without Dennis this huge shipment could not come to Lviv and  I would never figure out without Judah what is in the boxes with medical equipment.

I was so relieved to travel to Lviv.  I almost forgot that we have war in Ukraine. There were a lot of people in the streets, a lot of traffic, yes I missed, open cafes and restaurants. I felt life there that I missed for almost 44 days.

On the way back we stopped with Judah at the gas station for a bowl of borscht. There were a lot of people there. Among them we met Juris Jurass a deputy of the Latvia Parlament who came to Ukraine to fight Russians:


So far it was the best day out of the 44 days of war.

And yes,  the West is the best!



We visited the hospital today and made a visit to the patients. Tomorrow Judah will have two surgeries."

Stay tuned. 

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