LIMERICK people are rallying to support the suffering people of Ukraine with donated medicines and supplies, which are being collected at the former Cleeves factory site on O’Callaghan Strand.
Mayor Daniel Butler moved to get the local authority, Limerick Twenty Thirty and the University of Limerick on board after a heartfelt appeal from a Polish woman living in the city.
The ‘Help for Ukraine’ programme was initiated after Polish native Anna Mazeika, who has been living in Limerick for 17 years and is a representative of NGO ‘Pokolenie,’ contacted the Mayor at the weekend, asking for his support for her campaign to send medical supplies from Limerick to hospitals in Ukraine.
Anna explained: “My sister and I decided at the weekend that we wanted to do something to help and I decided to contact the Mayor out of the blue and he got on board immediately.
“We started out by looking for enough medical supplies to fill a van to drive to Ukraine but it now looks like we are going to get a truck full.
“My employers, Serosep Diagnostic Solutions, which is a Limerick born and bred company, and its chief executive Dermot Scanlon, got behind the appeal immediately, as have Fleming Medical, another local firm, which is giving a huge reduction off the cost of medical supplies.
“It’s all about treating injuries so people will be guided by pharmacy staff if they don’t know themselves what to buy.”
Mayor Butler said: “Anna made contact with me out of the blue and it was the easiest ‘yes’ I’ve given to any request during my term as Mayor.
“We’re all outraged, saddened and shocked by what we are seeing unfold here in Europe in 2022. At the same time, we are marvelling at the incredible bravery of the people of Ukraine and the support from the likes of Poland, Moldova, Slovakia, Romania and Hungary.
“In fact, we’re humbled by what we are seeing so the least we can do is support this initiative to get medical and other essential supplies out to Ukraine”.
The warehouse, which is being provided free of charge, is accepting supplies between 5pm and 7pm each day up to Friday and they will be dispatched to Ukraine on Monday.
Medical supplies are the priority but other items being sought include disinfectants, power banks (charged), batteries, flashlights, headlamps and stainless-steel bottles. The full list can be viewed on the Help for Ukraine Facebook event page.
Logistics arrangements are already in place for the consignment to be shipped on Saturday, arriving on the Ukrainian border on Monday and then dispatched by NGO ‘Pokolenie’ via a safe corridor to hospitals in Ukraine.
Meanwhile, the Redemptorists in Limerick are appealing for donations to help the Redemptorists in Ukraine support and shelter people and to keep a safe corridor open for aid to get into the war-torn country.
The Redemptorists are offering shelter, food, and medical support in Tschernihiv in the north of Ukraine, and Berdyansk in the east, as well as Lviv and in several locations close to the Polish border.
The Redemptorists in Poland are adopting a leadership role, keeping the safe corridor open and providing shelter, food and support for Ukrainian refugees.
There will be a collection at Masses on Saturday and Sunday and credit card donations can be made by calling 061 315099.
Cheques made payable to the Redemptorists can be mailed to Fr Seamus Enright, Mount St Alphonsus, South Circular Road, Limerick.