Volunteers gather supplies, essentials in Brooklyn for Ukrainian refugees

GRAVESEND, Brooklyn (WABC) -- A rescue attempt is in full throttle in Brooklyn as volunteers fiercely gather supplies of all kinds to help the refugee crisis in Ukraine following Russia's invasion.

Deep in a basement on West 9th Street in Gravesend, volunteers are working like their lives depend on it, and in a way, it does.

Ukrainian Americans, by the dozens, are sorting, packing, taping, and loading -- enough for five huge truckloads so far.

One was filled with medicine for their brethren back in the warzone.

"I can't explain it because it's coming from here. We all doing this because we have to do something. We just can't watch how they destroying Ukraine," volunteer Arthur Popovich.

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Organizers tell Eyewitness News reporter Lucy Yang that the container will fly out first thing Wednesday morning, land early next week in Poland, then be driven into western Ukraine where another team of volunteers are standing by to distribute the critical medical supplies.

"We definitely not going to stop. We're going to do as much as possible," volunteer Valeria Vasylets said.

Inside every box is a love note. One says, "Stay Strong our dearest. You are the best. Ukraine will survive. With love from New York."
That's a lot of love.

Once the load goes out, the next truck will be filled with equipment for the soldiers who are fighting a war they never started.

Nonperishable foods and clothes will be shipped later. On top of that, Lucy Yang was told a group from Ohio is now driving several trucks full of donations to this location.

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Russian forces escalated their attacks on populated urban areas Tuesday, bombarding the central square in Ukraine's second-largest city. Jim Dolan has the latest details.

What began with a small message on social media has exploded.

One of the main organizers expressed gratitude Tuesday night, for all the kindness, generosity, and prayers pouring into her homeland.

You can head to the group's website if you would like to donate towards medical essentials or contribute to their shipping costs.

Drop off is located at 1675 W. 9th Street in Brooklyn if you'd like to donate items to their cause.

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