I Want to Help Ukraine
Serhiy Perebyinis is a Ukrainian software engineer who married his high school sweetheart Tetiana and lived right outside of Kyiv with their two children and two dogs. He was the nerd in the relationship, while she was the “fun” one who enjoyed gardening and skiing.
Earlier this year, due to his ailing mother’s deteriorating health conditions, Serhiy traveled hundreds of miles away so he could look after her in eastern Ukraine. Serhiy and Tetiana constantly communicated to ensure each other’s safety.
On March 6, Tetiana broke the horrific news that their apartment building was hit by the Russians, and that they had no electricity, no gas, no water, and barely any cellular signal. Serhiy became very worried, and encouraged his wife to take the kids and run.
“I told my wife, “I am sorry, I couldn’t protect you.” But she said, ‘don’t worry, we will get through it, everything will be good.’” Said Serhiy.
And that was the last time he heard from her. As he frantically tried to get in touch with her and locate her after a period of no response, he came across a photo being shared on Twitter, an image of a family struck down, children’s bodies lying lifelessly facing down.
“I recognized my children even though their faces were hidden,” Serhiy said. “I was able to recognize them by their clothing, their backpacks, and the suitcase.”
And just like that, Serhiy lost everything.
And this is one of the many tragic stories currently still happening in Ukraine. As the attack continues to its fourth week, more people are fleeing, suffering, and dying. Sitting on the other side of the world and seeing all these events happening on TV and social media, it’s hard for me to believe that this is actually happening in our day and age. It also made me feel helpless as a recipient of such horrific news but unable to do anything about it.
So I reached out to Polska Misja Medyczna, or Polish Medical Mission (https://pmm.org.pl/en), to see how I can help. PMM is a Polish humanitarian organization that provides medical assistance to the neediest countries in the world. They are currently working with Red Cross Ukraine to support the hospitals there.
In the coming days, they hope to expand their assistance by opening First Aid Points at the Ukrainian/Polish border where they will set up their medical tents and ambulances and have doctors and paramedics available 24/7. They are also looking to purchase a field hospital that will allow doctors to perform emergency surgical procedures on the spot. Such field hospitals could cost around PLN 3 million (around USD $700,000). They also hope to purchase “clinical assistance tents,” – which are attached to the field hospitals for patients who require longer observation.
My sincerest respect to these heroes on the field risking their own lives and providing assistance to those in urgent need. Perhaps we will not raise anywhere close to the required funds to build a field hospital, EVERY LITTLE BIT COUNTS.
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