A love of baking has brought hope to Nicole Campbell and her partner Mike, as the war in Ukraine came close to home in Melbourne. In June last year, Nicole, in her job at the Hudson Institute of Medical Research, decided to join #CookForUkraine to help UNICEF continue their work supporting children and their families in Ukraine.
Nicole baked traditional Ukrainian cakes which she brought to work to share with her research colleagues who generously donate money for a slice to support families caught in the war in Ukraine.
Nicole began raising funds when Mike’s Ukrainian family were caught in the midst of the war. His uncle, aunt (Nina) and 12-year-old cousin (Andriy) lived in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, which has endured missile strikes and destruction in residential areas since the conflict began. Nina and Andriy were able to flee; squeezing onto a crowded train to Lviv and a few days later waiting six hours for another train which took them across the border into Poland, before they travelled further to Austria.
At the end of their six-day journey, on high alert at all times for the sounds of war, they flew to Ireland where they are staying with family, separated from his uncle, who had to stay behind for military service.
One year on, and Nina and Andriy remain in Ireland, staying in a large Dublin hotel that is housing thousands of refugees. Nina has been writing regularly for an Irish publication, about her experience as a refugee in Ireland while Andriy attends a local primary school and has been rapidly improving his English skills.
“We’re really grateful that Mike’s aunt and cousin are safe,” said Nicole “It has been hard for them to be away from home for so long, and I know they follow updates on the war closely. There is a large community of Ukrainian refugees in Ireland now, and most people are very welcoming towards them,” Nicole said.
Through #CookForUkraine, Nicole surpassed her fundraising target of $500 for UNICEF Australia’s Ukraine appeal.
Hosting a lunch, dinner, morning tea or bake sale is a great way to try new things in the kitchen whilst making an incredible impact on the lives of children living in emergencies.
Host a lunch, dinner, or morning tea to raise urgent funds to support children in emergencies around the world.
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