ROSE LIEBER, 14, and Rosti Penek, both of Wakefield, teamed up to get urgently needed supplies to Ukraine. (Photo Courtesy of Daniel Lieber)
WAKEFIELD – A 14-year old girl teamed up with her school and a local Ukrainian-born neighbor to collect needed supplies and ship them to Ukraine. Rose Lieber, a Galvin Middle School 8th grade student, wanted to take action to support the people of Ukraine after seeing many people offer thoughts, prayers, and then not take any meaningful action. Realizing her school classmates and others would help if given specific achievable directions, she contacted Rostislav Penek, who operates a local BBQ restaurant, on what specific items were needed urgently in Ukraine.
Mr. Penek, who was born in Berdichiv, has friends and family who continue to be besieged in Ukraine. He is in regular contact with many people and is sending supplies to Kharkiv, Kyiv, Odessa, Mikolayv, Kamyanez-Podilsky.
Miss Lieber received permission from the school administration and student council to raise awareness of the drive for the first in-person school dance that occurred on Friday, April 1. Students, families, and the community excitedly donated items including medical supplies such as wound care including gunshot wound trauma kits, gauze packs, sterile gloves, disinfectant and bandages. Other donations included needed personal care items such as soap, toothbrushes, and feminine products. This was accompanied by $131 in additional cash donations collected by students at the dance to help with the shipping cost. The items, along with many other needed donations collected by Mr. Penek, are expected to be shipped this week.
Rose stated, “Thoughts and prayers aren’t helping the people throughout Ukraine survive this genocide. These supplies are needed now. This is a way that we can help today.” Mr. Penek added, “The horrors of what is happening is not being realized by so many people in America and around the world. What has happened in Bucha, Irpin, and other cities is despicable. We need to take strong action now to stop the slaughter and help people. Supplies are desperately needed. We must work together to provide all Ukrainians with the ability to survive, be safe, defend independence, have territorial integrity, and freedom!”
Supplies and funds will continue to be collected and donated for as long as necessary. Visit https://fb.com/Wakefield4Ukraine for more information about this drive.