Local faith groups gather aid for Ukraine

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FAITH-related relief groups in Manitoba are appealing for donations and prayers to help people affected by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 01/03/2022 (333 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

FAITH-related relief groups in Manitoba are appealing for donations and prayers to help people affected by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Mennonite Central Committee is accepting donations for programs that support displaced and vulnerable people. This includes emergency housing, food, blankets and other supplies, as well as trauma healing.

“We are working with our partners and assessing the situation as it unfolds,” said Scott Campbell, MCC director of development.

Response to the appeal has been “super encouraging” so far, he said, noting MCC began more than 100 years ago in Ukraine when North American Mennonites responded to a food crisis in the eastern European country.

“Our supporters recognize our historical connection to Ukraine,” he said. (To make a donation, visit www.mcc.org or call 1-877-684-1181.)

Canadian Lutheran World Relief is inviting donations for food, necessities and trauma care for people impacted by the invasion.

“The numbers of displaced people are staggering,” said David Turner, who directs communications and marketing, adding the agency is in contact with its partners in Europe about the most effective ways to distribute the aid.

One partner in Hungary has already shipped 28 tonnes of food for refugees, he said.

The response to the appeal, which launched Feb. 25, has been positive, with about $100,000 already donated. (To donate, visit www.clwr.org or call 1-800-661-2597.)

Roman Catholics are invited to respond to needs in Ukraine through Development and Peace-Caritas Canada, which is working with its partners in the region to provide food, shelter, medical care and transportation to safe locations for people in that country.

“As the conflict goes on, much more funding will be required to meet Ukrainians’ needs,” the agency said, asking Canadians to “give generously.” (Donations can be made at www.devp.org or by calling 1-888-664-3387.)

The Jewish Federation of Winnipeg has launched an appeal to help the 200,000 members of the Ukrainian Jewish community.

“The entire country faces chaos, scarcity and political violence, and members of Ukraine’s Jewish community are especially vulnerable,” said Elaine Goldstine, chief executive officer of the federation.

Many members of the local Jewish community trace their roots to Ukraine, Goldstine said, including herself — her father was born in that country.

“We want to show the Ukrainian community in Winnipeg we stand with them at this time of crisis,” she said. “What is happening in Ukraine is so sad.”

Within minutes of posting the appeal on social media donations started to come in, Goldstine said, adding funds raised through the federation will be forwarded to Jewish agencies working on the ground in Ukraine. (Donations can be made by visiting jewishwinnipeg.org/ukraine or by calling 204-477-7400.)

Canadian Foodgrains Bank is working through its members to respond to the crisis. A list of its member agencies that have launched appeals for Ukraine can be found on its website.

faith@freepress.mb.ca

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John Longhurst

John Longhurst
Faith reporter

John Longhurst has been writing for Winnipeg's faith pages since 2003. He also writes for Religion News Service in the U.S., and blogs about the media, marketing and communications at Making the News.

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