The Cambridge-Isanti Rotary club has taken on an ambitious project of raising $25,000 to cover the cost of sending two containers of medical supplies to Cherkasy, Ukraine. The first container was sent on February 28 and the next is planned for May, 2023.
The medical supplies have been donated by Matter, a non-profit humanitarian aid agency located in St. Louis Park, MN. The supplies have been received from area and regional hospitals, warehouses and manufacturers located around Minnesota and surrounding states.
The supplies are delivered to Hand in Hand Logistics, a non-profit located in rural Isanti. At this location, volunteers from Isanti and surrounding counties gather on Monday mornings to sort the supplies into 15 categories. The supplies are then packaged and readied for shipment.
The connection with the Cherkasy club was made last summer when Julia Pais from the Cherkasy Club was visiting the Cambridge area. As a result of this initial connection, further contact was made by Lee Scheumann of the Cambridge-Isanti club with Denys Andrushchenk, president of the Cherkasy Club.
“We are in critical need of hospital equipment and supplies in the city of Cherkasy,” stated Andrushchenk. “Prior to the war, Cherkasy was a city of 225,000. Since that time, we have had to host over 50,000 refugees. We also are receiving large numbers of soldiers who have been wounded in the war, all requiring medical supplies and equipment.”
“According to Bohdan Borukhovskyi, Deputy Minister of Health in Ukraine, over 927 health care facilities have been damaged or destroyed,” stated Scheumann. “The need is acute, both for the civilian and military population.”
Efforts are underway to also procure used hospital equipment of all varieties – beds, diagnostic equipment, laboratory and surgical – to replace or upgrade what has been damaged.
The containers are routed through Gdansk, Poland, then sent to Cherkasy Rotary Club where in turn they will be divided between local hospitals.
Donations are being accepted by the Cambridge-Isanti Rotary Club, Box 631, Cambridge, MN, 55008. Further information on Hand in Hand Logistics can be found at www.handinhandlogistics.org.