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VICTORY GARDENS 2023
A fantastic initiative that allows the Ukrainians to grow vegetables over the coming months to feed themselves. We provide them with vegetable seeds and tools, local communities come together to plant the seeds and harvest their vegetables. It is really simple and it works.
These poor people have been indoors for months living in extreme conditions and relying on aid. This project gives them the opportunity to give something back. The land used for planting is given by local mayors and many Ukrainians have their own gardens. Before the war it was the bread basket of Europe!
Victory Gardens is a truly rewarding experience for everyone involved. Many of us are lucky enough to eat the veg we grown in our gardens, or be able to buy it in the shops. In Ukraine, it is not quite so simple, 40% of the population rely on aid. That is a massive figure. This project allows displaced people and communities the opportunity to feed themselves.
Victory Gardens grows vegetables for
thousands of people and a unique opportunity for communities to come together.
In 2022 this was the most successful project we achieved. Thank you for your ongoing support – with your help we can make a big difference!
25th February 2023
This a month in which we had 3 enormous generators arriving in the Kyiv area. This was a mission to get these huge generators loaded onto articulated lorries and sent to Kyiv a mere 1600 miles from here. We are so grateful to the three very kind donors who entrusted us with generators that were worth of £260,000. Due to security we cannot tell you too much about these donations yet, but what we know is that the largest generator was able to power a 5000 people in a village, amazing to think we could help that many people with one generator, an enormous thank you to the donor - you know who are!!. Our second generator has gone to pump the water, this is one on the home page. This Rolls Royce generator donated from Carters Steam Fair in Maidenhead. had only 260 hours on the clock despite its age, a prized antique as nowadays they don't make generators that look like that or work like that!. Our third large generator was brand new and has gone to power a small hospital, a fantastic donation and so appreciated by us.
This was an incredibly busy month. From BBC Radio 4 programme Broadcasting House - 04/12/2022 - BBC Sounds We had tremendous support. We raised over £70k which bought 90 generators and we were also donated over 90 generators. Thank you to the British Public who very kindly supported our generator campaigns. They are still on going and absolutely vital for the Ukrainians right now. Please continue to support us.
We delivered 193 generators to Ukraine. 4 trucks left the UK in January 23
Truck 1 had 6 pallets of food and generators.
Truck 2 Had 2 huge generators to water pumping stations and an invincibility centre.
Truck 4 had 28 pallets of mainly generators.
Truck 4 had the massive generator from Halifax which went to pump the water in Kyiv.
8th December - 16th January 23
The phone lines are ringing every day, the donations are pouring in, there are generators all over the country to collect and we three are exhausted yet exhilarated! There is so much to do to get these geneators into Ukraine.
7th December 22
FINALLY….. the truck has crossed the border into Ukraine – what a moment that was. Every item that had been donated by you back in England reached its destination. 70 generators, 4 Tonnes of flour, 180 bags of ski clothes (washed by Pip) as well as many tonnes of food and survival kit. We also had on board over 1000 Christmas boxes which local children had made. The food pantry in Hertford had also been instrumental in getting these boxes made as well as our local schools in Ramsbury and Wroughton. Please see our Instagram for photos of all the donations or otherwise please look at completed projects on our home page. THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH.
There was a huge team back in England, to get the 44 tonne filled. We had hubs in Berkshire, Dorset, Hertfordshire, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Shropshire, and Wiltshire organised by our appointed ambassadors, they did a fantastic job, thank you so much, to Fran, Clare, Camilla, Philip, Kevin, Sophie, Zahra, Maili and Simon, this truck would not have been filled without your hard work.
We were lucky enough to have ITV West Country and ITV Meridian to cover our departure. There are some great clips on here and well worth a watch. Please click on the link – it’s safe!!.
Caragh was also on BBC Radio 4 talking about generators. We would like to thank BBC presenter Anita Anand for having Caragh on the program. This was an enormous boost to our third generator campaign. We are always looking for more donations to buy generators. Please continue to support this vital work.
Broadcasting House - 04/12/2022 - BBC Sounds
30th November 2022:
The lorry has arrived in Poland - James, Pip and Caragh greeted our heroic drivers Mick Brennand from Cefetra who sponsored the lorry and Josh aged 18, who passed his HGV only 3 weeks ago arrived looking a little weary. The truck had to be unloaded into a customs warehouse for onward transportation into Ukraine. It was great to realise that these goods were half way to their final destination. Now we have to go through the customs which we know is not an easy process.
28th November 2022
Our 44 tonne lorry, so kindly donated by Cefetra left with 22 tonnes about GDP 140,000 worth of goods on board left for Poland. On the lorry were 70 generators, the most greatly needed item in Ukraine right now. There were teams around the home counties who opened their homes and village halls to collect for this campaign Living without Power. It was a tremendous effort and the team at HAFGB and UktoUkraine are so grateful. Thank you to everyone who made this possible and most importantly to all our donors.
25th November 2022
We have had an amazing response to our generator appeal and FILL THE TRUCK. Now we will be taking generators again so please continue to donate your generators, the most wanted item in Ukraine this winter. So far we have now got 70 generators on board this truck. THANK YOU We have also been donated two generators one from Sweden and one from Halifax which are enormous. They are going to Kyiv to pump the water and the other one to the main hospital. .These generators are like gold dust so please KEEP DONATING YOUR GENERATORS.
23rd November 2022
FILL THE TRUCK, on Monday 28th November the 44 tonne lorry kindly donated by Cefetra will leave carrying 66 generators 4 pallets of flour, Christmas boxes for children and essential supplies to the Polish/Ukraine border. James, Pip and Caragh will meet the truck kindly donated by Cefetra to organise the distribution of the incredible donations we have received with our Polish and Ukrainian partners. We must thank our Ambassadors in the home counties and beyond who organised collections for us for this trip. We apologise that our website is not updated as regularly as we would wish but we are incredibly busy sorting the truck. THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH FOR YOUR DONATIONS and your continued support.
The summer saw a big step forward for UKtoUkraine when we merged with HAFGB a registered charity 1199500 doing exactly the same as us. This enabled our donors to receive tax relief and for the charity to get gift aid. We feel with the job ahead of us we must combine minds and resources to give the Ukrainians more effective support.
26th July 2022
June and July have been busy months for organising deliveries of food supplies to Ukraine. It is also the summer holidays and somehow the website has not been updated but we are on the case now. Behind the scenes we are preparing for the winter and a vast amount of organisation has been implemented for future projects. So, please read on to find out our what is next in line for UKTOUKRIANE. Firstly thank you for your ongoing donations, everything single thing you give goes to those that need it most and there are millions of them. If you have a way of raising funds, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org
Since March 2022 we have delivered well over 200k of aid to the Ukrainian people. We have been lucky enough to have so many friends and new friends who have raised funds on our behalf. Emily Hill who raised 11k with a virtual cycle ride form London to Lviv, a fantastic effort and thought the funds did not come directly to us, we were able to organise for them to go to a Ukrainian charity. In June we send hundreds of tools and more food which was so kindly donated by you. Jilly Carter was instrumental in organising her team for Victory Gardens, an going project that so many people resonated with. The vegetables are a vital source of food and occupation to so many who's lives have been devastated by the war.
SO WHAT NEXT; we are very excited to announce that we are in the process of merging with HAFGB a registered UK charity which stands for Humanitarian Aid Fund GREAT BRITIAN founded in March just like us. We had thought long and hard about the best way forward and having raised so much money we needed to be a charity. So in the coming weeks, we will be able to get gift aid and if you are a UK tax payer you will be able to claim your donation on your tax return depending on your status.
HAF GB was set up Cliff Barry, an inspirational man who's vision and values are the same as ours. We drove our goods door to door and they do the same. They have partners in Poland as do we, our partners are now working together. Currently we are distributing 200k worth of medical equipment that was donated by Bath hospital to HAFGB. Collectively we are stronger, more contacts, more checks in place and we can help Ukrainian refugees in many more areas than before.
UktoUkraine will still have our own website, but our websites will be linked to www.hafgb.co.uk
With all new charities there are boxes to tick so please be patient whilst we get the dreaded admin done.
We hope you will continue to support us. We have temporarily put up a new JustGiving site. PLEASE do not donate anonymously as you may be unable to off set your UK tax donation. Also to note that JustGiving will ask you for a voluntary contribution, this does not benefit our charity, it is purely an administration charge and they charge us in any case.
As the summer rolls on, we all have lives to lead but please think of those in need, the news channels seem to have all but forgotten the war in Ukraine!
1st July 2022
We are excited to announce our new projects Project Generator.
Probably the most wanted item in Ukraine.
We are aiming to send out 8kw diesel generators and above to allow field hospitals to run. Last time we sent 45 generators, but they were slightly smaller than the ones requested now. If you could help in anyway by donating to our fund, or you have a generator - we would be so grateful. Each generator costs around £1800 so we need to raise a minimum of 25k. We will as before deliver these personally to Poland on 18th August and two Ukrainian doctors will collect them from us on the border. They are desperate.
It is our aim to collect laptops and tablets delivering them to Ukraine on 12th July. They will be used for online learning for children and most importantly in hospitals.
For more information on these projects please visit our urgent projects page.. If you have anything apart from clothing that you would like to donate, please email email@example.com Thank you all for your continued support.
22nd June 2022
We are excited to announce are latest project called... Project Computers. It is our aim to collect computers and then deliver them to Ukraine where they will be used as either tools for online learning or tools for hospitals. For more information on this please visit our urgent projects page. Furthermore, we are currently scheduling two more trips to Ukraine which are aiming to depart on the 12th of July and 16th of August. Thank you all for your continued support.
27th to 29th April 2022
VISIT TO UKRAINE:
Two of our founders, Caragh and James responded to an urgent call for help and departed for Poland with 24 hours’ notice on Wednesday 27th April to assist with the sorting and distribution of the vegetable seeds and tools that uktoukraine purchased in aid of Project Victory Gardens.....this is their story.....
The seeds and tools were delivered to the depot of our partners , the Folkowisko Foundation on Monday. Following a phone call with the depot we realised that the volunteers were overstretched and rather overwhelmed by the quantity of seeds that needed to be sorted ready for delivery on Thursday so we made a last minute decision to fly out to Poland on Wednesday morning to help!
We arrived on Wednesday afternoon and got straight to work sorting the seeds before loading the vans ready for a 9am departure to Ukraine on Thursday. Direct action!
Two of the Folkowisko volunteers, Izabela and Dave drove us the 30 minutes from the depot to the border where we were escorted past a 3km queue of Ukrainians returning home with cars bought tax free from Poland. The Polish and Ukrainian governments agreed a 2 week tax-free window to allow the Ukrainians to replace cars that have been destroyed in the war zones.
Arriving at the border, the situation was very different from when we last visited a few weeks ago. The refugee welcoming village has been dismantled as those refugees (mostly mothers and children) who wanted to leave Ukraine have already left the country and most Ukrainians fleeing the fighting in the east of the country are now residing in the west, at least 7 million displaced Ukrainians! The passage through Polish customs was fairly easy and the Ukrainian customs was more thorough but still the whole process only took about 30 minutes.
Then we were on Ukrainian territory...it seemed surreal to be entering a war zone!
We travelled inland for a while and seeing this beautiful country, it is awful to think that in Eastern Ukraine these villages no longer exist. Sadly we cannot give the names of the villages we visited as in the news today we heard that two Humanitarian aid workers were captured by the Russians….therefore we are not allowed to give locations in Ukraine to protect other aid workers. We saw evidence of where Ukrainian soldiers were buried - the blue and yellow flag above their graves, incredibly sad.
Our first destination was a hospital to check on a donation from our Polish partners, Folkowisko Foundation. They had organised new fridges for the blood as the previous ones dated back to the 1950's. It was interesting to see a new a blood storage unit from Sweden in action as well.
It was now time for our first rendezvous to meet Olga, an amazing lady who was organising Victory Gardens in her region! We are now surrounded by armed soldiers keeping a close eye on us as we unload the kit. They are a little suspicious of us at first but after an hour or so we get smiles and a lot of greatly needed help.
Heading out to our first village with the seeds and tools, we have no idea what to expect. These people have so much on their minds, the whole country is affected even if they are not in the firing line right now. The first village was a beautiful village on a hillside, lots of military everywhere and we were asked not to film or disclose any locations. It is important to respect their feelings with so many of their families directly or indirectly affected by this WAR. The seeds and tools are distributed, endless people turn up to take their seeds and you can see how grateful they are to be given something to do, a mission to accomplish. Throughout the day we went to so many villages, every form of seed you can imagine is handed out, James gets his first taste of Ukrainian soil – being a farmer he is well aware of how fertile this land is, he can see huge potential to grow vegetables on a massive scale. It is a sort of marathon, we arrive, we drop off and on our way to the next destination, this was day one of many. Olga and her team would be busy in coming week to get this project rolling. It is something else for them to think about, the war is still in its relatively early stage and there is only one topic on everyone’s mind, how do we get rid of Putin?
During the day we met so many lovely people, refugees from the east, town mayor’s and teachers etc, mainly women as the men were either in military uniform or to old. We also went to a boarding school for orphans and disabled children. The land had been prepared in some areas and all these grateful recipients were as keen to leave and get going on their projects to help feed communities in the coming months. We planted trees for loved one’s missing and finally as dusk approached, exhausted and hungry………….the sirens went off!! Earlier in the day we had visited a damp bunker, now it appeared we would be heading underground for real. However, the charming town councillor had other ideas, he had waited all day for us was hungry and thirsty, so he looked up to the sky and thought perhaps a drink of some Italian liquor and his homemade food was a better option. Too tired to think otherwise, we followed him into to his office where we were able to look on the siren app to see where the trouble was. As this was the day after NATO had visited Putin and the NATO delegates were now in Ukraine, this was a warning shot from the powers that be that nowhere in Ukraine is safe.
We headed back to Poland, having been presented with a plaque which was rather special in the Mayor’s office, they are such a proud nation and you can see they want and will win this War.
So on behalf of the people of Ukraine, who have received seeds and tools from Victory Gardens, THANK YOU, it has been an amazing trip, we have learnt so much and we have so much more we can do.
15th April 2022
Another couple of weeks have flown by………What are we up to now?
As the ever-changing situation in Ukraine unfolds, we must react to see how best to spend your funds to help the Ukrainian people.
'Victory Gardens' is our latest mission!
Some of us will spend the next weeks planting vegetables to enjoy over the summer months. That is exactly what 'Victory Gardens' is all about. The difference is that here, we could buy everything we need in a supermarket. In Ukraine that is just not possible!
Here at UktoUkraine, we will supply the seeds to be planted and grown by families who host displaced people. We and our Polish partner, Stowarzyszenie Folkowisko (an incredible organisation who work round the clock, going back and forth into Ukraine with food supplies and much more besides) will ensure this project becomes a reality. Our collective aim is to ensure a supply of healthy food over the summer and beyond.
Did you know that in Ukraine there are no refugee camps, this amazing nation does not believe in them! When you become a refugee, you go to a reception point and then to a welcome centre, where you spend a maximum of two nights. This could be in a sports hall, the town hall or something similar. At that point you are asked whether you would like to leave Ukraine or be placed with a family. This is incredible, says so much about this nation that they wish to make their people feel at home!
Can you imagine that there are 7 million people to be hosted within Ukraine! All of these refugees become part of an over gown family, this is why 'Victory Gardens' is so important! Local councils right across western Ukraine have designated land especially for this project. We all know how big Ukraine is so we are aiming to play our part in this significant initiative.
You have heard the news, food shortages, supply chains are no longer what they were. Volunteers in Poland are exhausted and there is a feeling that this war is going to continue for some time. Project 'Victory Gardens' is going to help ease the food shortages. Displaced people, along with their host families will have a project to do and they will reap the rewards in the coming months.
We have now hit the press!!
FARMERS WEEKLY have already picked up on this project, do read about our co-founder James Boughey “Dorset farmer leads mission to tackle Ukraine food shortage” written by Virginia Furness
BBC WILTSHIRE (104.9) are interviewing co-founder Caragh Booth at 10.30am on the 15th of April.
Please spread the word, keep donating and thank you from all of us to all of you!
3rd April 2022
If you read the front of the Sunday Times this weekend 3/4/22, you would wonder if they had forgotten to report on the war in Ukraine. A headline but no photo until you got to page 4. We then get to page 15 before we get further articles on the atrocities of the Russian forces. Do we as a nation have more appetite to read scandal on our front and inner pages rather than learn how this heroic nation is defending itself against Russia? Should we forget those who are fighting to keep their freedom of their country or should we continue to report? There is a feeling in Poland that support is waning yet if you could see on the ground what this nation has done - you would be proud to be a part of it.
Recently I have watched "Winter on Fire" on Netflix. This film is probably the best insight into Ukrainian minds and what it was like to live under indirect rule from Moscow. This nation is just like ours; we are lucky that we live so far away from Russia.
There are so many amazing British stories of people going across with ambulances, trucks, vans, cars and horseboxes full of supplies, this is the true British Spirit, and they need so much more it. So, if you are willing to go, you should! They don't want clothes; they need food and masses of it and generators too. If you would like information on where to take it, please contact us, firstname.lastname@example.org
30th March 2022
Mission 2, Our second mission was to raise enough funds for the First Aid Trailer, generators, food and foil blankets. Our team of drivers drove non-stop for 36 hours arriving at the depot at 2.30am on 3oth March 2022 - they must be whacked! James Boughey (co-founder) Rupert Nuttall, Ian Hepburn, Chris Barber and of course the lovely Marcin made the 1200 miles to Poland! Well done the team, some hilarious video footage and a sight into
28th March 2022
Mission 2 is on route to Poland. What a week we have had here at uktoukraine so many people to thank! Firstly, Nuttall Equestrian lent us their horse box and trailer, what a gift for a great cause! Then Ramsbury Brewery lent us their warehouse and on top of all that we had teams of shoppers who bought every conceivable item from every store in the land! Fleets of vehicles arrived laden with supplies. Teams of amazing volunteers unpacked, sorted, and boxed food ready for transportation to Poland! This was a massive task! The Ed White Project was a huge success, 45 generators are on the lorry right now, these generators are one of the most important items needed right now. This is on-going campaign! Dorset friend, Sophie Henderson who opened her home for collections and raised tens of thousands of £’s. This was a mega achievement in just 5 days, THANK YOU SOPHIE! And then to TEALS (a food emporium just off the A303 near Wincanton) who emailed all their customers, we gained more funds and donations - we are so incredibly grateful. This was all achieved in less than 5 days - thank you from all the team @uktoukraine!
20th March 2022
What a couple weeks we have had – a huge thank you for all of your support! We are now up to speed on the technology front and hopefully you have been able to follow our journey on instagram and here!
YOU have made a MASSIVE difference!!
We are in daily contact with Krystian co-ordinator in Horyniec-Zdroj (Agie’s Village) & Marcin who is the director of distribution at the hub where your donations go! From there, the supplies are taken to the Ukrainian side of the Budomierz border crossing. Tonight 20th March they have put out an urgent request…for food and medical supplies!
WHY? The Russians are targeting closer to the Polish border and the supply lines into Ukraine are even more compromised and the border villages of Poland are struggling to provide supplies. WHAT CAN WE DO? We have been kindly offered a 6 horse, massive horse lorry to load up to depart next weekend, pillar to post - This will take 2.5 times our previous trip - SO LET’S FILL IT!! HOLD ON? You have raised (as of 6pm Sunday 20 March) £78,000 – why don’t you use some of that? We have already allocated your very generous ££ donations to the following:- 2,000 lifesaver mobile phone chargers - already in use (these have been sent into Lviv today!) 200 St John’s Ambulance First aid kits – already in use (Ukraine side - border) Hundreds of head torches - thermal blankets and lightweight towels – already in use (Ukraine side) First Aid Medic Base (shipping container) – purchased, kitted out and already in position in Ukraine 35 generators - will be transported in the horse lorry this weekend to a selection of Ukrainian towns and cities and we are still raising funds for this! Ambulance - have narrowed down availability in Europe, finalising this coming week
WHAT WE NEED:
Medical supplies – strong painkillers, sleep enhancers, anything for urinary tract infections, travel sickness, burn cream, nappy cream, anti diarrheal, glucose, cough syrup, Paracetamol, Ibuprofen, Nurofen, anti septic cream, bandages and anything like these
Water treatment tablets
Food (We love the Polish – no messing about, they are very specific!)
40% canned food – meat, fish, pate in small cans (single rations are easier to distribute)…hmmmm no mention of baked beans!!
20% canned food ready to eat – soup and meat dishes
20% instant food – add boiling water e.g. pot noodles, huel, oats in a pot
10% sweets – individually wrapped wafers, bars, lollipops, juices in small cartons
5% flour – for baking white bread
5% pasta, rice, instant coffee
WHERE TO DONATE:
Axford Village Hall will be manned this Wednesday 23rd 9-4pm and Thursday 9-1pm (call me on 07919 413 394 if you want to drop at mine RG17 0PW instead…)
OR on Thursday afternoon we will be doing a massive Booker shop – so if you wish to donate and quote BOOKER in your donation we can purchase for you!!
Thank you, thank you!!
14th March 2022
We are back and have accomplished "Mission 1"
Thank you for your generous donations and support for the people of Ukraine, they are incredibly grateful. We are so happy we were able to help them directly. It was vital that we were on the ground to make the personal contacts. Our new found friends Robert, Krystian and Marcin are inspiring. Agie from the village who is James' friend was right, her village needed support and you gave it to them!
THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH.
The situation is changing daily! We must react quickly!
We would like to thank our volunteers this end, there were so many and each and every one of you made a huge difference in getting this trip together in 5 days. It was a mammoth task, each time we loaded a van we needed another one! At 12 hours' notice we got the fourth van, it was incredible. In under 5 days you all achieved this. It is such a great feeling to live in a such a tiny village as Axford and see how everyone rallied round to help. The Ramsbury community and their team were exceptional "you know who you are"! In Dorset, where this all started, we had donations flooding in too, thank you to all those who sent donations to Piddle Valley Stores.
This trip was our first, we drove for 31 hours stopping only for fuel, it was exhausting but exhilarating... we now know what the term meals on wheels is! We feel we can really make a difference as your donations go direct. No changing of lorry trailers, no theft, just from village to village.
We have learned so much, Krystian and Marcin are the kindest people you will ever meet. They organise an army of volunteers, as many as 150 work in 6 hour shifts in their distribution centre sorting out aid. They deliver hot soup and sandwiches to the 6 mile queues of people waiting in freezing conditions to cross the border. Hypothermia is the main cause of death and they have to deal with that too.
The missile attack on Sunday was only 17 miles from where we were at the border crossing. They heard it and Marcin had to donate his Ambulance to that terrible attack and now he desperately needs a replacement. His ambulance is used to transport sick people. I don't think there is anything that those two men don't do.
So that is "Mission 2" - Raise money for Marcin's ambulance. We will buy it and deliver it there. We are hoping to buy it in Germany and deliver it next week.
Each week we will be raising funds.
We will not bombard you on email, we don't have time so we are asking all of you to pass our details to anyone you know who might help us.
No donation is too small, no donation is too big.
Please spread the word, subscribe, share the link, use Instagram!