Women’s Giving Circle shows support for Ukraine

Published: Jul. 26, 2022 at 9:13 PM CDT
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CHIPPEWA VALLEY, Wis. (WEAU) -Fostering support and creating hope were a couple of the goals at Tuesday’s Sunflowers & Sips event in Chippewa Falls.

The philanthropic organization, Women’s Giving Circle, a fund of the Eau Claire Community Foundation, planned the event which focused on the crisis in Ukraine as Russia continues its invasion of the country.

“This is a very somber time in Ukraine, it’s a very gruesome time in Ukraine, but yet there’s a lot of hope,” Women’s Giving Circle Member, Natalia Ripecky, said. “The Ukrainian spirit, the people in Ukraine have wonderful resilience.”

Natalia Ripecky spoke at the event. She lives in Altoona, WI, but she has family members in Ukraine.

“Most of the refugees who have escaped Ukraine are women and children, 90%,” Ripecky said. “They’ve either lost their husbands, or had to say goodbye to their husbands, their homes are rubble, they have no place to return.”

Another speaker is a native to Ukraine. Luda Anastazievsky shared some of what she was hearing from her friends and family still there.

“There’s no water, there’s no heat, there’s no communication in the city,” Ukrainian Activist, Luda Anastazievsky, said. “People are hiding in bomb shelters and all the time I was praying for them everyday thinking, I just hope they survive, I just hope they aren’t killed.”

Organizers say the discussion aimed to remind people in the Chippewa Valley that the crisis is not over, and that it’s important to keep bringing awareness to what is happening.

“Not to forget and not to just get desensitized to what you have seen on T.V. and forget it,” Ripecky said. “Please remember.”

Anastazievsky said that what’s happening in Ukraine reaches beyond that country’s borders.

“The events in Ukraine impact the whole world, and you know, the United States is the country of immigrants,” Anastazievsky said. “I am also a teacher of immigrant children and I think it’s wonderful that our country and our community is so receptive to the needs of refugees.”

Organizers hope discussions like this one inspire more people to take action, in whatever way they can.

To find a charity that supports Ukraine click here.

For more information on Women’s Giving Circle click here.

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