Couple from Newport in Prague support refugees fleeing Ukraine
A NEWPORT couple working in Prague raised more than £5,000 in just over two days to buy supplies for Ukrainian refugees fleeing to the city.
James Ward said the couple decided to set up the fundraiser after his wife Olivia visited a refugee center – Dignity – on Sunday.
“After she came back she said there was a desperate need there and with the number of people who are going to be arriving in the next two weeks we have to help,” Mr Ward said.
“At first, I messaged friends and family asking for donations and went to pick up supplies for the center.
“We didn’t expect people to get involved the way they did. We now have over £5,000 in just two days. Most of it is £10, £20, £30 from people at home.
“I work as a teacher and when the job is done I go to the wholesalers to buy as many things as possible – diapers, clothes, non-perishables.”
Mr Ward described the situation as “pretty grim” in Prague as thousands of refugees – mostly women and children – flee west across Europe to avoid war.
“The situation here is just very, very sad,” he said. “There are thousands of people arriving in Prague – mothers and children who had to leave their husbands and fathers to fight. And they arrive with nothing.
“There is a huge community effort here in Prague as well as everywhere.
“We offer our apartment as accommodation for refugees and our friends also offer their house.
“It’s pretty grim. As much as we try to be optimistic, I think everyone knows it’s not going to be a short term thing.
“It was people from Newport who sent the money, and we’re both from Newport and we source our supplies here. I would like to say a big thank you to everyone who donated.
“There is a huge need here that will continue and continue.”
Anyone wishing to donate to the fundraiser should contact Kevin Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org or @KevinWardMedia on Twitter.