MEDYKA, POLAND – Our coverage of the Ukraine crisis continues. Our crews visited the Ukraine border where volunteers from around the world are pitching in. Right at that Ukraine border, our crews ran into American volunteers, including one from a nearby New York community.
We’re at the Poland- Ukraine border you can see right behind me that’s where the cars are crossing into Ukraine. We’re told the amount of traffic passing through Ukraine has considerably calmed down since the Russian invasion into Ukraine began and at this border crossing near Medyka, Poland, if you’re not crossing through by car, refugees and volunteers are crossing by foot.
“We gotta get this stuff to the border,” yelled one volunteer. We came across a couple of Americans from Arizona, Alaska, and Corning, New York.
“I’ve just been helping out wherever is needed,” said Cody from Arizona. “Fixing generators, running supplies across the border. Anything and everything.”
“I’m gonna go down, hand out chocolate bars to the kids and families and stuff,” said Ryan from Alaska.
“I just packed up my stuff, told my job I’m gonna go over there and help,” said Cristian from Corning, New York. “Came here with no contacts, showed up and jumped in.”
Some said they initially came here to help fight the Russians, but they’ve pivoted to relief efforts instead.
They say each day their responsibilities vary. They’re working alongside people from all over the world who, like these Americans, came here with no plans and no contacts but are willing to be a helping hand.
“I just knew there was stuff I couldn’t be doing back home and so I just figured I’d change that and come here,” said Ryan from Alaska. “Seeing a lot of the kids come in its gut-wrenching but for the most part: stay busy, push it aside we’ll deal with it later. When you come here to volunteer its not about you or how you’re feeling; it’s about the people you help.”