The Whitianga Lions Club, along with all Lions clubs throughout the world, received an appeal from the chair of the Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF), Dr Jung Yu Choi, to spare a thought for the people of Ukraine with the ongoing Russian conflict which is posing substantial challenges to them. Over two million people have been forced to flee their homes to escape the violence of war. It is estimated that up to four million people may have no option but to try and leave their homeland as the crisis continues.
Through its humanitarian Refugees and Displaced Persons Fund, LCIF is mobilising funds and awarding grants to enable Lions in neighbouring countries to help provide for the immediate needs of Ukrainian refugees. Dr Choi asked clubs to “walk in the shoes” of those forcefully displaced and spare a thought for the victims of this conflict. As a result, at the Whitianga Lions’ club meeting last week, it was decided to donate $1,500 towards the appeal.
According to Dr Choi, some such grants have already been awarded, but there is still a long way to go. “Lions from Romania crossed the border into Ukraine in an area that has had serious supply problems because of difficult road and rail connections,” he said. “They took with them packages containing blankets, non-perishable food, wet towels and napkins for babies, bottled water, winter coats and women hygiene products.
“The Lions of Krakow, Poland are passionately serving relief efforts for their neighbours in Ukraine… The Lions are providing cartons with medicine and bandages, and delivering them to the border of Ukraine and Poland.
“The Lions Clube de Braga, Portugal is sending a bus to transport 30 children, women and men from Ukraine at the Polish border, who will be accommodated in the city of Braga in Portugal. On the bus will be a medical and nursing team, as well as food and drinks, hygiene products, thermal clothing and medicine.”
Pictured are some of the Whitianga Lions members at a recent BBQ.