Dozens and dozens of international humanitarian organizations have set up temporary relief centers along the pedestrian walkway from the border crossing to provide a variety of services to the refugees—- food, health care, counseling, arrangements for temporary housing, etc. Many other official organizations, like the UNHCR, EU, IOM have large tents with banners announcing their presence. A giant LED screen lists bus departures, which are leaving constantly. They travel to train stations and cities throughout the country.
As I walked down the “Main Street” of this tent city towards the actual border, I passed by Ukrainian refugees coming and going, desperately fleeing, or fearfully returning—-most carrying a small suitcase, a backpack, or a few bags stuffed with their most prized possessions.
Imagine having to suddenly leave home, not knowing whether you’d ever return, and having to pick from all your possessions the few most precious things you could literally carry out. The images I saw today remind me of old black and white photos of WWII refugees fleeing with only the clothes on their back and a small suitcase. How can this be happening in our enlightened 21st century?
As saddened as I am at the plight of the Ukrainian people, particularly women and children, I am overwhelmed at the kindness of strangers from Poland and around the world. They have come here to serve “the least of these”—- the homeless, the hungry, the hopeless.
I am beyond grateful for the sacred service of volunteers from Poland and across the globe who have come to serve. And I am grateful for those who generously support the people and organizations on the front lines of human need.
Please continue to support these great organizations, including Global Care Force!