The Students for Ukraine action is an initiative of Master student management of technology Tomasz Drozdowski. When Delta reporter Marjolein van der Veldt approached him at the weekend to write an article about his action, he had a question in return: can we use your office as a collection point?
And so it happened, and on Monday 28 February, the students and Van der Veldt started the campaign. Donors - students and staff of the TU Delft and other people from the city and its surroundings - brought what they could spare. It was a relentless and heartwarming procession. Volunteers, (international) students, then sorted the items. They provided the boxes with descriptions of their contents in Ukrainian, English and Polish.
Warm clothes, coats and towels are much needed and came in large quantities, just like baby milk, toothbrushes and toothpaste, nappies, medicines, batteries, dog food and so on. The amount was so large that the students needed and got more space in the TU Delft Library. In the meantime, the action had been extended to Leiden, The Hague, Rotterdam and Amsterdam.
Thursday was the day: a truck from the Ukrainian Red Cross was scheduled to arrive at 3 PM to collect the first load. When one driver fell ill and the other was forced to rest, the plans had to be changed.
The students hired a van and volunteers drove back and forth to bring the collected goods to the next depot, on Campus The Hague. There, they will be loaded into the Red Cross truck, which will then visit the other participating cities. The plan is that it will then leave for the outskirts of the capital Kyiv.
Despite the appeal of several aid organisations to donate money instead of goods (to giro 555 for example), the Ukrainian Red Cross is happy with the fundraising campaign, because in Ukraine and surrounding countries goods like sleeping bags, batteries and torches are in danger of running out. The same applies to medicine, nappies, baby milk and other products that people need every day.
- The local broadcaster Omroep West made this short television report (in Dutch) on Thursday.
(Photo: Marjolein van der Veldt)
The Students for Ukraine campaign was initially planned to run until Friday 4 March. Meanwhile, the TU Delft Library has made a new space available to them (the Blue Room, left in the main hall), where people can bring their stuff until 24 March. Friday afternoon they moved there and it became a bit quieter in the Delta office.
- Keep an eye on Students for Ukraine on Instagram for more information.