Call for donations as van set to leave South Tyneside to support Ukraine - how you can help as war against Russia continues
People in South Tyneside are being encouraged to show some kindness and support to Ukrainians in need as a van full of donations prepares to head to the war-torn country from the borough.
STARCH (South Tyneside Asylum Seekers and Refugee Church Help) is arranging for a van to take much needed supplies to the conflict zone to support those in need, as the fighting in the country rages on.
The van will leave South Tyneside on Monday night (September 26) for a ferry and will then head on to Ukraine.
How you can help
Organisers are looking for a range of items and supplies to be donated for help see people through the cold autumn and winter months.
What is needed?
Supplies being sought include:
*Thermal underwear and socks
*Tinned food with a ring pull
*Cereal and protein bars
*Gloves and scarves
Where should I take donations?
The drop off point for donations from residents and local businesses to support the effort is 16 Barrington Street, South Shields, NE33 1AN.
Volunteer for STARCH, Margaret Gregg, said: “We were given the unit by South Tyneside Council as a meeting place for our Ukrainian refugees.
"It has been hugely successful as a meeting place.
"We have Russian/Ukraine speakers who help them with form filling, DWP and GP appointments.
"They are an invaluable part of the team.”
What is the latest in Ukraine?
On Wednesday (September 21) Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a partial mobilisation of Russian forces in response to Ukraine regaining territory in the northern Kharkiv region.
The announcement applies to 300,000 Russian military reservists.
Referendums have also been announced by President Putin to be held in Russian-occupied areas of Ukraine about joining Russia, a move already condemned and labelled a ‘sham’ by Prime Minister Liz Truss.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said it showed the mobilisation of troops shows Mr Putin wanted to ‘drown Ukraine in blood’ - including that of his own soldiers.
It has now been seven months since Russia launched their invasion of Ukraine.